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The following tale is not intended as a work of con- 
troversy in behalf of the Catholic Religion ; but as a 
description of what is understood by few, — the course 
of thought and state of mind, or rather one of those 
courses and states, which issue in conviction of its 
Divine origin. 

Nor is it founded in fact, to use the common phrase. 
It is not the history of any individual mind among 
the recent converts to the Catholic Church. The prin- 
cipal characters are imaginary ; and the writer wishes 
to disclaim personal allusion in any. It is with this 
view that he has feigned ecclesiastical bodies and places, 
to avoid the chance, which might otherwise occur, of 
unintentionally suggesting to the reader real individuals, 
who were far from his thoughts. 

At the same time, free use has been made of say- 
ings and doings which are characteristic of the time 
and place in which the scene is laid. And moreover, 
when a general truth or fact is exhibited, as in a tale, 
in individual specimens of it, it is impossible that the 
ideal representation should not more or less coincide, 


in spite of the author's endeavour, with its existing 
instances or champions. 

It must also be added, to prevent a further mis- 
conception, that no proper representative is intended 
in this tale, of the religious opinions which had lately 
so much influence in the University of Oxford. 

Feb. 21, 1848. 

Cobb ani (Coin. 



Charles Reding was the only son of a clergyman, 
who was in possession of a valuable benefice in a 
midland county. His father intended bim for orders, 
and sent bim at a proper age to a public school. He 
had long revolved in his mind the respective advan- 
tages and disadvantages of public and private edu- 
cation, and had decided in favour of the former. 
" Seclusion," he said, " is no security for virtue. 
There is no telling what is in a boy's heart ; he may 
look as open and happy as usual, and be as kind and 
attentive, when there is a great deal wrong going on 
within. The heart is a secret with its Maker ; no 
one on earth can hope to get at it, or to touch it. I 
have a cure of souls ; what do I really know of my 
parishioners ? nothing ; their hearts are sealed books 
to me. And this dear boy, he comes close to me ; 
he throws his arms round me ; but his soul is as 
much out of my sight as if he were at the Antipodes. 



I am not accusing him of reserve, dear fellow ; his 
very love and reverence for me keep him in a sort 
of charmed solitude. I cannot expect to get at the 
hottom of him : 

' Each in his hidden sphere of bliss or woe, 
Our hermit spirits dwell.' 

It is our lot here below. No one on earth can 
know Charles's secret thoughts. Did I guard him 
here at home ever so well, yet, in due time, it might 
be found that a serpent had crept into the Eden 
of his innocence. Boys do not fully know what is 
good and what is evil ; they do wrong things at first 
almost innocently. Novelty hides vice from them ; 
there is no one to warn them or give them rules ; 
and they become slaves of sin, while they are learn- 
ing what sin is. They go to the University, and 
suddenly plunge into excesses, the greater in pro- 
portion to their inexperience. And besides all this, 
I am not equal to the task of forming so active and 
inquisitive a mind as his. He already asks ques- 
tions which I know not how to answer. So he shall 
go to a public school. There he will get discipline 
at least, even if he has more of trial ; at least he 
will gain habits of self-command, manliness, and cir- 
cumspection ; he will learn to use his eyes, and will 
find materials to use them upon ; and thus will be 
gradually trained for the liberty which, any how, he 
must have when he goes to College." 

This was the more necessary, because, with many 
high excellences, Charles was naturally timid and 
retiring, over-sensitive, and, though lively and cheer- 
ful, yet not without a tinge of melancholy in his 


character, which sometimes degenerated into maw- 

To Eton, then, he went ; and there had the good 
fortune to fall into the hands of an excellent tutor, 
who, while he instructed him in the old Church-of- 
England principles of Mant and Doyley, gave his 
mind a religious impression, which secured him 
against the allurements of bad company, whether at 
the school itself, or afterwards at Oxford. To that 
celebrated seat of learning he was in due time trans- 
ferred, being entered at St. Saviour's College ; and 
he is in his sixth term from matriculation, and his 
fourth of residence, at the time our story opens. 

At Oxford, it is needless to say, he had found 
a great number of his schoolfellows ; but, it so 
happened, had found very few friends among them. 
Some were too gay for him, and he had avoided 
them ; others, with whom he had been intimate at 
Eton, having high connexions, had fairly cut him on 
coming into residence, or, being entered at other 
Colleges, had lost sight of him. Almost every thing 
depends at Oxford, in the matter of acquaintance, on 
proximity of rooms. You choose your friend, not 
so much by your tastes, as by your staircase. There 
is a story of a London tradesman who lost custom, 
after beautifying his premises, because his entrance 
went up a step ; and we all know how great is the 
difference between open and shut doors when we 
walk along a street of shops. In a University, a 
youth's hours are portioned out to him. A regular 
man gets up and goes to chapel, breakfasts, gets up 
his lectures, goes to lecture, walks, dines ; there is 


little to induce him to mount any staircase but his 
own ; and if he does so, ten to one he finds the friend 
from home whom he is seeking ; not to say that 
freshmen, who naturally have common feelings and 
interests, as naturally are allotted a staircase in com- 
mon. And thus it was that Charles Reding was 
brought across William Sheffield, who had come into 
residence the same term as himself. 

The minds of young people are pliable and 
elastic, and easily accommodate themselves to any 
one they fall in with. They find grounds of attrac- 
tion both where they agree with another and where 
they differ ; what is congenial to themselves creates 
sympathy ; what is correlative, or supplemental^ 
creates admiration and esteem. And what is thus 
begun, is often continued in after-life by the force 
of habit and the claims of memory. Thus, in the 
selection of friends, chance often does for us as 
much as the most careful selection could have 
effected. What was the character and degree of that 
friendship which sprang up between the freshmen, 
Reding and Sheffield, we need not here minutely 
explain : it will be enough to say, that what they 
had in common was freshmanship, good talents, 
and the back staircase ; and that they differed in 
this : that Sheffield had lived a good deal with 
people older than himself, had read much in a desul- 
tory way, and easily picked up opinions and facts, 
especially on controversies of the day, without lay- 
ing any thing very much to heart ; that he was 
ready, cleai'-sighted, unembarrassed, and somewhat 
forward; — Charles, on the other hand, had little 


knowledge as yet of principles or their bearings, but 
understood more deeply than Sheffield, and held 
more practically what he had once received ; he was 
gentle and affectionate, and easily led by others, 
except when duty clearly interfered. It should be 
added, that he had fallen in with various religious 
denominations in his father's parish, and had a ge- 
neral, though not a systematic, knowledge of their 
tenets. What they were besides, will be seen as 
our narrative advances. 


It was a little past one p.m., when Sheffield, passing 
Charles's door, saw it open. The college-servant 
had just entered with the usual half- commons for 
luncheon, and was employed in making up the fire. 
Sheffield followed him in, and found Charles in his 
cap and gown, lounging on the arm of his easy 
chair, and eating his bread and cheese. Sheffield 
asked him if he slept, as well as ate and drank, 
"accoutred as he was." " I am just going for a 
turn into the Meadow," said Charles ; " this is to 
me the best time of the year ; nunc formosissimus 
annus ; every thing is beautiful ; the laburnums are 
out, and the may. There is a greater variety of 
trees there than in any place I know hereabouts ; 
and the planes are so touching just now, with their 
small multitudinous green hands half opened; and 
there are two or three such fine dark willows 


stretching over the Cherwell ; I think some Dryad 
inhabits them : and as you wind along, just over 
your right shoulder is the Long Walk, with the Ox- 
ford buildings seen between the elms. They say 
there are dons here who recollect when it was un- 
broken, nay, when you might walk under it in hard 
rain, and get no wet. I know I got drenched there 
the other day." 

Sheffield laughed, and said that Charles must 
put on his beaver, and walk with him a different 
way. He wanted a good walk ; his head was stupid 
from his lectures ; that old Jennings prosed so aw- 
fully upon Paley, it made him quite ill. He had 
talked of the Apostles as " neither deceivers nor 
deceived," of their "sensible miracles," and of their 
" dying for their testimony," till he did not know 
whether he himself was an ens physiologicum or 
a totum metaphysicum, when Jennings had cruelly 
asked him to repeat Paley's argument ; and because 
he had not given it in Jennings's words, friend Jen- 
nings had pursed up his lips, and gone through the 
whole again ; so intent, in his wooden enthusiasm, on 
his own analysis of it, that he did not hear the clock 
strike the hour ; and, in spite of the men's shuffling 
their feet, blowing their noses, and looking at their 
watches, on he had gone for a good twenty minutes 
past the time ; and would have been going on even 
then, he verily believed, but for an interposition only 
equalled by that of the geese at the Capitol. For 
that, when he had got about half through his recapi- 
tulation, and was stopping at the end of a sentence 
to see the impression he was making, that uncouth 


fellow, Lively, moved by what happy inspiration he 
did not know, suddenly broke in, apropos of nothing, 
nodding his head, and speaking in a clear cackle, 
with, " Pray, sir, what is your opinion of the infal- 
libility of the Pope?" Upon which every one but 
Jennings did laugh out ; but he, au contraire, began 
to look very black ; and no one can tell what would 
have happened, had he not cast his eyes by accident 
on his watch, on which he coloured, closed his book, 
and instanter sent the whole lecture out of the room. 
Charles laughed in his turn, but added: "Yet, 
I assure you, Sheffield, that Jennings, stiff and cold 
as he seems, is, I do believe, a very good fellow at 
bottom. He has before now spoken to me with a 
good deal of feeling, and has gone out of his way to 
do me favours. I see poor bodies coming to him for 
charity continually ; and they say that his sermons at 
Holy Cross are excellent." Sheffield said he liked 
people to be natural, and hated that donnish manner. 
What good could it do ? and what did it mean ? 
" That is what I call bigotry," answered Charles ; 
" I am for taking every one for what he is, and not 
for what he is not : one has this excellence, another 
that ; no one is every thing. Why should we not 
drop what we don't like, and admire what we like ? 
This is the only way of getting through life, the only 
true wisdom, and surely our duty into the bargain." 
Sheffield thought this regular prose, and unreal. 
"We must," he said, "have a standard of things, 
else one thing is as good as another. But I can't 
stand here all day," he continued, " when we ought 
to be walking." And he took off Charles's cap, and 


placing his hat on him instead, said, " Come, let As 
- be going." " Then must I give up my Meadow ?" 
said Charles. " Of course you must," answered 
Sheffield ; " you must take a beaver walk. I want 
you to go as far as Oxley, a village some little way 
out, all the vicars of which, sooner or later, are 
made Bishops. Perhaps even walking there may 
do us some good." 

The friends set out, from hat to boot in the most 
approved Oxford bandbox cut of trimness and pret- 
tiness. Sheffield was turning into the High Street, 
when Reding stopped him : " It always annoys me," 
he said, "to go down High Street in beaver; one 
is sure to meet a Proctor." " All those University 
dresses are great fudge," answered Sheffield; "how 
are we the better for them 1 they are mere outside, 
and nothing else. Besides, our gown is so hideously 
ugly." "Well, I don't go along with your sweeping 
condemnation," answered Charles; "this is a great 
place, and should have a dress. I declare, when I 
first saw the procession of Heads at St. Mary's, it was 
quite moving. First — " " Of course the pokers," 
interrupted Sheffield — "First the organ, and every 
one rising ; then the Vice-Chancellor in red, and his 
bow to the preacher, who turns to the pulpit ; then 
all the Heads in order ; and lastly the Proctors. 
Meanwhile, you see the head of the preacber slowly 
mounting up the steps ; when he gets in, he shuts-to 
the door, looks at the organ-loft to catch the psalm, 
and the voices strike up." Sheffield laughed, and 
then said, " Well, I confess I agree with you in your 
instance. The preacher is, or is supposed to be, a 


person of talent ; he is about to hold forth ; the di- 
vines, the students of a great University are all there 
to listen. The pageant does but fitly represent the 
great moral fact which is before us ; I understand 
this. I don't call this fudge ; what I mean by fudge 
is, outside without inside. Now I must say, the ser- 
mon itself, and not the least of all the prayer before 
it — what do they call it?" ?' The bidding prayer," 
said Reding. "Well, both sermon and prayer are 
often arrant fudge. I don't often go to University 
sermons, but I have gone often enough not to go 
again without compulsion. The last preacher I heard 
was from the country. Oh, it was wonderful ! He 
began at the pitch of his voice, ' Ye shall pray.' 
What stuff ! • Ye shall pray ,-' because old Lati- 
mer or Jewell said, • Ye shall praie,' therefore we 
must not say, ' Let us pray.' Presently he brought 
out," continued Sheffield, assuming a pompous 
up-and-down tone, " ' especially for that pure and 
apostolical branch of it established,'' — here the man 
rose on his toes, 'established in these dominions.' 
Next came, ' for our Sovereign Lady Victoria, 
Queen, Defender of the Faith, in all causes and 
over all persons, ecclesiastical as well as civil, with- 
in these her dominions, supreme' 1 — an awful pause, 
with an audible fall of the sermon -case on the 
cushion ; as though nature did not contain, as if the 
human mind could not sustain, a bigger thought. 
Then followed, ' the pious and munificent founder,' 
in the same twang, ' of All Saints' and Leicester Col- 
legesJ' But his chef-d'oeuvre was his emphatic recog- 
nition of 'all the doctors, both the proctors,' as if the 


numerical antithesis had a graphic power, and threw 
those excellent personages into a charming tableau 
vivant." Charles was amused at all this ; but he 
said in answer, that he never heard a sermon, but it 
was his own fault if he did not gain good from it ; 
and he quoted the words of his father, who, when he 
one day asked him if so-and-so had not preached a 
very good sermon, " My dear Charles," his father 
had said, " all sermons are good." The words, sim- 
ple as they were, had retained a hold on his memory. 
Meanwhile they had proceeded down the for- 
bidden High Street, and were crossing the bridge, 
when, on the opposite side, they saw before them a 
tall, upright man, whom Sheffield had no difficulty 
in recognising as a batchelor of Nun's Hall, and a 
bore at least of the second magnitude. He was in 
cap and gown, but went on his way, as if intend- 
ing, in that extraordinary guise, to take a country 
walk. He took the path which they were going them- 
selves, and they tried to keep behind him ; but they 
walked too briskly, and he too leisurely, to allow of 
that. It is very difficult duly to delineate a bore in 
a narrative, for the very reason that he is a bore. 
A tale must aim at condensation, but a bore acts in 
solution. It is only on the long-run that he is ascer- 
tained. Then, indeed, he is felt ; he is oppressive ; 
like the sirocco, which a native detects at once, 
while a foreigner is often at fault. Tenet, occi- 
ditque. Did you hear him make but one speech, 
perhaps you would say he was a pleasant well-in- 
formed man ; but when he never comes to an end, 
or has one and the same prose every time you meet 



him, or keeps you standing till you are fit to sink, 
or holds you fast when you wish to keep an engage- 
ment, or hinders your listening to important conver- 
sation, — then there is no mistake, the truth bursts 
on you, apparent dirce fades, you are in the clutches 
of a bore. You may yield, or you may flee ; you 
cannot conquer. Hence it is clear that a bore cannot 
be represented in a story, or the story would be the 
bore as much as he. The reader, then, must believe 
this upright Mr. Bateman to be, what otherwise he 
might not discover, and thank us for our considera- 
tion in not proving as well as asserting it. 

Sheffield bowed to him courteously, and would 
have proceeded on his way ; but Bateman, as became 
his nature, would not suffer it ; he seized him. " Are 
you disposed," he said, " to look into the pretty 
chapel we are restoring on the common ? It is quite 
a gem — in the purest style of the 14th century. It 
was in a most filthy condition, a mere cow-house ; 
but we have made a subscription, and set it to rights." 
" We are bound for Oxley," Sheffield answered ; " you 
would be taking us out of our way." " Not a bit of 
it," said Bateman ; "it's not a stone's throw from the 
road ; you must not refuse me. I'm sure you'll like 
it." He proceeded to give the history of the chapel 
— all it had been, all it might have been, all it was 
not, all it was to be. " It is to be a real specimen 
of a Catholic chapel," he said ; " we mean to make 
the attempt of getting the Bishop to dedicate it to 
the Royal Martyr — why should not we have our 
St. Charles as well as the Romanists? — and it will be 
quite sweet to hear the vesper-bell tolling over the 


sullen moor every evening, in all weathers, and amid 
all the changes and chances of this mortal life." 
Sheffield asked what congregation they expected to 
collect at that hour ? " That's a low view," answered 
Bateman ; " it does not signify at all. In real Ca- 
tholic churches the number of the congregation is 
nothing to the purpose ; service is for those who 
come, not for those who stay away." " Well," said 
Sheffield, " I understand what that means, when a 
Roman Catholic says it ; for a priest is supposed to 
offer sacrifice, which he can do without a congrega- 
tion as well as with one. And then, again, Catholic 
chapels often stand over the bodies of martyrs, or on 
some place of miracle, as a record ; but our service 
is ' Common Prayer,' and how can you have that 
without a congregation?" 

Bateman replied that, even if members of the 
University did not drop in, which he expected, at 
least the bell would be a memento far and near. 
" Ah, I see," retorted Sheffield, " the use will be 
the reverse of what you said just now ; it is not 
for those that come, but for those who stay away. 
The congregation is outside, not inside ; it's an out- 
side concern. I once saw a tall church-tower — so 
it appeared from the road ; but on the sides you 
saw it was but a thin wall, made to look like a 
tower, in order to give the church an imposing 
effect. Do run up such a bit of a wall, and put 
the bell in it." "There's another reason," answered 
Bateman, " for restoring the chapel, quite independ- 
ent of the service. It has been a chapel from time 
immemorial, and was consecrated by our Catholic 


forefathers." Sheffield argued, that this would be as 
good a reason for keeping up the Mass as for keep- 
ing up the chapel. " We do keep up the Mass," said 
Bateman ; " we offer our Mass every Sunday accord- 
ing to the rite of the English Cyprian, as honest 
Peter Heylin calls him ; what would you have 
more ?" Whether Sheffield understood this or no, 
at least it was beyond Charles. Was the Common 
Prayer the English Mass, or the communion-service, 
or the Litany, or the sermon, or any part of these ? 
or were Bateman' s words really a confession that there 
were clergymen who actually said the Popish Mass 
once a week? Bateman' s precise meaning, however, 
is lost to posterity ; for they had by this time arrived 
at the door of the chapel. It had once been the cha- 
pel of an almshouse ; a small farmhouse stood near ; 
but, for population, it was plain no " church accom- 
modation" was wanted. Before entering, Charles 
hung back, and whispered to his friend that he did not 
know Bateman. An introduction, in consequence, 
took place. " fteding of St. Saviour's, Bateman of 
Nun's ;" after which ceremony, in place of holy water, 
they managed to enter the chapel in company. 

It was as pretty a building as Bateman had led 
them to expect, and very prettily done up. There 
was a stone altar in the best style, a credence- 
table, a piscina, what looked like a tabernacle, and 
a couple of handsome brass candlesticks. Charles 
asked the use of the piscina, — he did not know its 
name, — and was told that there was always a piscina 
in the old churches of England, and that there could 
be no proper restoration without it. Next he asked 


the meaning of the heautifully wrought closet or re- 
cess above the altar ; and received for answer, that 
" our sister churches of the Roman obedience al- 
ways had a tabernacle for reserving the consecrated 
bread." Here Charles was brought to a stand : on 
which Sheffield asked the use of the niches ; and 
was told by Bateman, that images of saints were for- 
bidden by the canon, but that his friends, in all these 
matters, did what they could. Lastly, he asked the 
meaning of the candlesticks ; and was told that, Ca- 
tholicly-minded as their Bishop was, they had some 
fear lest he would object to lights in service — at 
least at first; but it was plain that the use of the 
candlesticks was to hold candles. Having had their 
fill of gazing and admiring, they turned to proceed 
on their walk, but could not get off an invitation to 
breakfast, in a few days, at Bateman' s lodgings in 
the Turk 


Neither of the friends had what are called views in 
religion : by which expression we do not here sig- 
nify that neither had taken up a certain line of opi- 
nion, though this Mas true also ; but that neither of 
them — how could they at their age? — had placed 
his religion on an intellectual basis. It may be as 
well to state more distinctly what a " view" is, what 
it is to be " viewy," and what is the state of those 
who have no " views." When persons, then, for the 
first time look upon the world of politics or reli- 


gion, all that they find there meets their mind's eye 
as a landscape addresses itself for the first time 
to a person who has just gained his bodily sight. 
One thing is as far off as another ; there is no per- 
spective. The connexion of fact with fact, truth 
with truth, the bearing of fact upon truth, and truth 
upon fact, what leads to what, what are points pri- 
mary and what secondary, — all this they have yet 
to learn. It is all a new science to them, and they 
do not even know their ignorance of it. Moreover, 
the world of to-day has no connexion in their minds 
with the world of yesterday ; time is not a stream, 
but stands before them round and full, like the 
moon. They do not know what happened ten years 
ago, much less the annals of a century ; the past 
does not live to them in the present ; they do not un- 
derstand the worth of contested points ; names have 
no associations for them, and persons kindle no re- 
collections. They hear of men, and things, and pro- 
jects, and struggles, and principles ; but every thing 
comes and goes like the wind, nothing makes an 
impression, nothing penetrates, nothing has its place 
in their minds. They locate nothing ; they have no 
system. They hear and they forget ; or they just 
recollect that they have once heard, they can't tell 
where. Thus they have no consistency in their ar- 
guments ; that is, they argue one way to-day, and 
not exactly the other way to-morrow, but indirectly 
the other way, at random. Their lines of argument 
diverge ; nothing comes to a point ; there is no one 
centre in which their mind sits, on which their judg- 
ment of men and things proceeds. This is the state 


of many men all through life ; and miserable poli- 
ticians or Churchmen they make, unless by good 
luck they are in safe hands, and ruled by others, or 
are pledged to a course. Else they are at the mercy 
of the winds and waves ; and, without being Radical, 
Whig, Tory, or Conservative, High Church or Low 
Church, they do Whig acts, Tory acts, Catholic acts, 
and heretical acts, as the fit takes them, or as events 
or parties drive them. And sometimes, when their 
self-importance is hurt, they take refuge in the idea 
that all this is a proof that they are unfettered, mo- 
derate, dispassionate, that they observe the mean, 
that they are " no party-men ;" when they are, in 
fact, the most helpless of slaves ; for our strength 
in this world is, to be subjects of the reason, and 
our liberty, to be captives of the truth. 

Now Charles Reding, a youth of twenty, could 
not be supposed to have much of a view in religion 
or politics ; but no clever man allows himself to 
judge of things simply at hap-hazard ; he is obliged, 
from a sort of self-respect, to have some rule or 
other, true or false ; and Charles was very fond of 
the maxim, which he has already enunciated, that 
we must measure people by what they are, and not 
by what they are not. He had a great notion of 
loving every one — of looking kindly on every one; 
he was pierced with the sentiment which he had 
seen in a popular volume of poetry, that 

" Christian souls, .... 
Though worn and soil'd with sinful clay, 
Are yet, to eyes that see them true, 
All glistening with baptismal dew." 


He liked, as he walked along the road, and met la- 
bourer or horseman, gentleman or beggar, to say to 
himself, " He is a Christian." And when he came 
to Oxford, he came there with an enthusiasm so 
simple and warm as to be almost childish. He re- 
verenced even the velvet of the Pro ; nay, the cocked 
hat which preceded the preacher had its claim on 
his deferential regard. Without being himself a 
poet, he was in the season of poetry, in the sweet 
spring-time, when the year is most beautiful, be- 
cause it is new. Novelty was beauty to a heart so 
open and cheerful as his ; not only because it was 
novelty, and had its proper charm as such, but be- 
cause when we first see things, we see them in a 
gay confusion, which is a principal element of the 
poetical. As time goes on, and we number and sort 
and measure things, — as we gain views, — we ad- 
vance towards philosophy and truth, but we recede 
from poetry. 

When we ourselves were young, we once on a 
time walked on a hot summer-day from Oxford to 
Newington — a dull road, as any one who has gone 
it knows ; yet it was new to us ; and we protest to 
you, reader, believe it or not, laugh or not, as you 
will, to us it seemed on that occasion quite touch- 
ingly beautiful ; and a soft melancholy came over 
us, of which the shadows fall even now, when we 
look back on that dusty, weary journey. And why ? 
because every object which met us was unknown 
and full of mystery. A tree or two in the distance 
seemed the beginning of a great wood, or park, 
stretching endlessly; a bill implied a vale beyond, 


with that vale's history ; the bye-lanes, with their 
green hedges, wound on and vanished, yet were not 
lost to the imagination. Such was our first journey ; 
but when we had gone it several times, the mind 
refused to act, the scene ceased to enchant, stern 
reality alone remained; and we thought it one of 
the most tiresome, odious roads we ever had occa- 
sion to traverse. 

But to return to our story. Such was Reding. 
But Sheffield, on the other hand, without possessing 
any real view of things more than Charles, was, at 
this time, fonder of hunting for views, and more in 
danger of taking up false ones. That is, he was 
" viewy," in a bad sense of the word. He was not 
satisfied intellectually with things as they are; he 
was critical, impatient to reduce things to system, 
pushed principles too far, was fond of argument, 
partly from pleasure in the exercise, partly because 
he was perplexed, though he did not lay any thing 
very much to heart. 

They neither of them felt any special interest in 
the controversy going on in the University and coun- 
try about high and low Church. Sheffield had a 
sort of contempt for it ; and Reding felt it to be bad 
taste to be unusual or prominent in any thing. An 
Eton acquaintance had asked him to go and hear one 
of the principal preachers of the Catholic party, and 
offered to introduce him ; but he had declined it. 
He did not like, he said, mixing himself up with 
party ; he had come to Oxford to get his degree, 
and not to take up opinions ; he thought his father 
would not relish it ; and, moreover, he felt some little 


repugnance to such opinions and such people, under 
the notion that the authorities of the University 
were opposed to the whole movement. He could 
not help looking at its leaders as demagogues ; and 
towards demagogues he felt an unmeasured aversion 
and contempt. He did not see why clergymen, how- 
ever respectable, should be collecting undergraduates 
about them ; and he heard stories of their way of 
going on, which did not please him. Moreover, he 
did not like the specimens of their followers whom 
he fell in with ; they were forward, or they " talked 
strong," as it was called ; did ridiculous, extravagant 
acts ; and sometimes neglected their college duties for 
things which did not concern them. He was unfor- 
tunate, certainly : for this is a very unfair account of 
the most exemplary men of that day, who doubtless 
are still, as clergymen or laymen, the strength of the 
Anglican Church ; but in all collections of men, the 
straw and rubbish (as Lord Bacon says) float on the 
top, while gold and jewels sink and are hidden. 
Or, what is more apposite still, many men, or most 
men, are a compound of precious and worthless to- 
gether, and their worthless swims, and their precious 
lies at the bottom. 


Bateman was one of these composite characters ; he 
had much good and much cleverness in him ; but he 
was absurd, and he afforded a subject of conversation 


to the two friends as they proceeded on their walk. 
" I wish there was less of fudge and humbug every 
where," said Sheffield ; " one might shovel off cart- 
loads from this place, and not miss it." " If you had 
your way," answered Charles, " you would scrape 
off the roads till there was nothing to walk on. We 
are forced to walk on what you call humbug ; we 
put it under our feet, but we use it." " I cannot 
think that; it's like doing evil that good may come. 
I see shams every where. I go into St. Mary's, and 
I hear men spouting out commonplaces in a deep 
or a shrill voice, or with slow, clear, quiet emphasis 
and significant eyes, as that Bampton preacher not 
long ago, who assured us, apropos of the resurrection 
of the body, that ' all attempts to resuscitate the in- 
animate corpse by natural methods had hitherto been 
experimentally abortive.' I go into the place where 
degrees are given — the Convocation, I think — and 
there one hears a deal of unmeaning Latin for hours 
— graces, dispensations, and Proctors walking up and 
down for nothing ; all in order to keep up a sort of 
ghost of things passed away for centuries, while the 
real work might be done in a quarter of an hour. I 
fall in with this Bateman, and he talks to me of rood- 
lofts without roods, and piscinae without water, and 
niches without images, and candlesticks without 
lights, and masses without Popery; till I feel, with 
Shakespeare, that ' all the world's a stage.' Well, I 
go to Shaw, Turner, and Brown, very different men, 
pupils of Dr. Gloucester — you know whom I mean — 
and they tell us that we ought to put up crucifixes by 
the wayside, in order to excite religious feeling." 


" Well, I really think you are hard on all these 
people," said Charles ; " it is all very much like 
declamation ; you would destroy externals of every 
kind. You are like the man, in one of Miss Edge- 
worth's novels, who shut his ears to the music, that 
he might laugh at the dancers." " What is the music 
to which I close my ears ?" asked Sheffield. " To the 
meaning of those various acts," answered Charles ; 
" the pious feeling which accompanies the sight 
of the image is the music." " To those who have 
the pious feelings, certainly," said Sheffield ; " but 
to put up images in England in order to create the 
feeling is like dancing to create music." " I think 
you are hard upon England," replied Charles ; " we 
are a religious people." " Well, I will put it dif- 
ferently : do you hke music ?" " You ought to 
know," said Charles, " whom I have frightened so 
often with my fiddle." "Do you Hke dancing?" 
" To tell the truth," said Charles, " I don't." " Nor 
do I," said Sheffield; "it makes me laugh to think 
what I have done, when a boy, to escape dancing ; 
there is something so absurd in it ; and one had to 
be civil and to duck to young girls who were either 
prim or pert. I have behaved quite rudely to them 
sometimes, and then have been annoyed at my un- 
gentlemanlikeness, and not known how to get out 
of the scrape." " Well, I didn't know we were so 
like each other in any thing," said Charles ; " oh, 
the misery I have endured, in having to stand up to 
dance, and to walk about with a partner! — every 
body looking at me, and I so awkward. It has 
been a torture to me days before and after." 


They bad by tbis time come up to the foot of 
the rough rising ground which leads to the sort of 
table-land, on the edge of -which Oxley is placed ; 
and they stood still a while to see some eques- 
trians take the hurdles. They then mounted the 
hill, and looked back upon Oxford. " Perhaps you 
call those beautiful spires and towers a sham," said 
Charles, " because you see their tops, and not their 
bottoms?" "Whereabouts were we in our argu- 
ment?" said the other, reminded that they had been 
wandering from it for the last ten minutes ; " oh, I 
recollect; I know what I was at. I was saying 
that you liked music, but didn't like dancing ; music 
leads another person to dance, but not you ; and 
dancing does not increase but diminishes the inten- 
sity of the pleasure you find in music. In like 
manner, it is a mere piece of pedantry to make a 
religious nation, like the English, more religious by 
placing images in the streets ; this is not the English 
way, and only offends us. If it were our way, it 
would come naturally without any one telling us. 
As music incites to dancing, so religion would lead 
to images. But as dancing does not improve music 
to those who do not like dancing, so ceremonies do 
not improve religion to those who do not like cere- 
monies." " Then do you mean," said Charles, 
" that the English Romanists are shams, because 
they do use crucifixes?" "Stop there," said Shef- 
field ; " now you are getting upon a different sub- 
ject. They believe that there is virtue in images ; 
that indeed is absurd in them, but it makes them quite 
consistent in honouring them. They do not put up 


images as outward shows, merely to create feelings 
in the minds of beholders, as Gloucester would do, 
but they in good downright earnest worship images, 
as being more than they seem, as being not a mere 
outside show. They pay them a religious worship, 
as having been handled by great saints years ago, 
as having been used in pestilences, as having wrought 
miracles, as having moved their eyes or bowed their 
heads ; or, at least, as having been blessed by the 
priest, and been made instruments of invisible grace. 
This is superstitious ; but it is real." 

Charles was not satisfied. " An image is a mode 
of teaching," he said ; " do you mean to say that a 
person is a sham merely because he mistakes the 
particular mode of teaching best suited to his own 
country ?" " I did not say that Dr. Gloucester was 
a sham," answered Sheffield ; " but that that mode 
of teaching of his was among Protestants a sham 
and a humbug." " But this principle will carry you 
too far, and destroy itself," said Charles. " Don't 
you recollect what Thompson quoted the other day 
out of Aristotle, which he had lately begun in lecture 
with Vincent, and which we thought so acute — that 
habits are created by those very acts in which they 
manifest themselves when created? We learn to 
swim well by trying to swim. Now Bateman, doubt- 
less, wishes to introduce piscinae and tabernacles ; 
and to wait, before beginning, till they are received, 
is like not going into the water till you can swim." 
" Well, but what is Bateman the better when his 
piscina is universal ?" asked Sheffield ; " what does 
it mean ? In the Romish Church it has a use, I 


know — I don't know what — but it comes into the 
Mass. But if Bateman makes piscinae universal 
among us, what has he achieved but the reign of 
a universal humbug?" "But, my dear Sheffield," 
answered Reding, " consider how many things there 
are, which, in the course of time, have altered their 
original meaning, and yet have a meaning, though a 
changed one, still. The judge's wig is no sham, yet 
it has a history. The Queen, at her coronation, is 
said to wear a Roman Catholic vestment, — is that a 
sham ? Does it not still typify and impress upon 
us the ' divinity that doth hedge a king,' though it has 
lost the meaning which the Church of Rome gave it ? 
Or are you of the number of those, who, according 
to the witticism, think majesty, when deprived of 
its externals, a jest?" " Then you defend the intro- 
duction of unmeaning piscinae and candlesticks?" 
" I think," answered Charles, "that there's a great 
difference between reviving and retaining ; it may 
be natural to retain, even while the use fails, un- 
natural to revive when it has failed ; but this is a 
question of discretion and judgment." "Then you 
give it against Bateman," said Sheffield. 

A slight pause ensued ; then Charles added, 
" But perhaps these men actually do wish to intro- 
duce the realities as well as the externals ; perhaps 
they wish to use the piscina as well as to have it. . . . 
Sheffield," he continued, abruptly, "why are not 
canonicals a sham, if piscinae are shams ?" " Cano- 
nicals," said Sheffield, as if thinking about them; 
" no, canonicals are no sham ; for preaching, I sup- 
pose, is the highest ordinance in our Church, and 


has the richest dress. The robes of a great preacher 
cost, I know, many pounds ; for there was one near 
us who, on leaving, had a present from the ladies of 
an entire set, and a dozen pair of worked slippers 
into the bargain. But it's all fitting, if preaching is 
the great office of the clergy. Next comes the Sa- 
crament, and has the surplice and hood. And hood," 
he repeated, musing; "what's that for? no, it's the 
scarf. The hood is worn in the University pulpit ; 
what is the scarf? it belongs to chaplains, I believe, 
that is, to persons ; I can't make a view out of it." 
"My dear Sheffield," said Charles, "you have cut 
your own throat. Here you have been trying to give 
a sense to the clerical dress, and cannot ; are you 
then prepared to call it a sham ? Answer me this 
single question — why does a clergyman wear a sur- 
plice when he reads prayers ? Nay, I will put it more 
simply — why can only a clergyman read prayers in 
Church? why cannot I?" Sheffield hesitated, and 
looked serious. "Do you know," he said, "you 
have just pitched on Jeremy Bentham's objection. 
In his Church of Englandism, he proposes, if I re- 
collect rightly, that a parish-boy should be taught to 
read the Liturgy ; and he asks, Why send a person 
to the University for three or four years at an enor- 
mous expense, why teach him Latin and Greek, on 
purpose to read what any boy could be taught to 
read at a dame's school? What is the virtue of a 
clergyman's reading? Something of this kind, Ben- 
tham says ; and," he added slowly, " to tell the truth, 
i" don't know how to answer him." Reding was 
surprised, and shocked, and puzzled too ; he did not 


know what to say ; when the conversation was, per- 
haps fortunately, interrupted. 


Every year brings changes and reforms. We do 
not know what is the state of Oxley Church now ; it 
may have rood-loft, piscina, sedilia, all new ; or it 
may be reformed backwards, the seats on principle 
turning from the Communion-table, and the pulpit 
planted in the middle of the aisle : but at the time 
when these two young men walked through the 
churchyard, there was nothing very good or very 
bad to attract them within the building ; and they 
were passing on, when they observed, coming out of 
the church, what Sheffield called an elderly don, a 
fellow of a college, whom Charles knew. He was a 
man of family, and had some little property of his 
own, had been a contemporary of his father's at the 
University, and had from time to time been a guest 
at the parsonage. Charles had, in consequence, known 
him from a boy ; and now, since he came into resi- 
dence, he had, as was natural, received many small 
attentions from him. Once, when he was late for 
his own hall, he had given him dinner in his rooms ; 
he had taken him out on a fishing expedition towards 
Faringdon ; and had promised him tickets for some 
ladies, lionesses of his, who were coming up to the 
Commemoration. He was a shrewd, easy-tempered, 


free-spoken man, of small desires and no ambition ; 
of no very keen sensibilities or romantic delicacies, 
and very little religious pretension ; tbat is, though 
unexceptionable in his deportment, he hated the show 
of religion, and was impatient at those who affected 
it. He had known the University for thirty years, 
and formed a right estimate of most things in it. He 
had come out to Oxley to take a funeral for a friend, 
and was now returning home. He hallooed to Charles, 
who, though feeling at first awkward on'finding him- 
self with two such different friends and in two such 
different relations, was, after a time, partially re- 
stored to himself by the unconcern of Mr. Malcolm ; 
and the three walked home together. Yet, even to 
the last, he did not quite know how and where to 
walk, and how to carry himself ; particularly when 
they got near Oxford, and he fell in with various 
parties who greeted him in passing. 

Charles, by way of a remark, said that they had 
been looking in at a pretty little chapel on the com- 
mon, which was now in course of repair. Mr. Mal- 
colm laughed. "So, Charles," he said, "you're hit 
with the new fashion." Charles coloured, and asked, 
" What fashion ?" adding, that a friend, by accident, 
had taken them in. "You ask what fashion ?" said 
Mr. Malcolm ; "why, the newest, latest fashion. 
This is a place of fashions ; there have been many 
fashions in my time. The greater part of the resi- 
dents, that is, the boys, change once in three years ; 
the fellows and tutors, perhaps, in half a dozen ; and 
every generation has its own fashion. There is no 
principle of stability in Oxford, except the Heads, 


and they are always the same, and always will be 
the same to the end of the chapter. What is in 
now," he asked, " among you youngsters ? drinking, 
or cigars?" Charles laughed modestly, and said he 
hoped drinking had gone out every where. "Worse 
things may come in," said Mr. Malcolm ; " but there 
are fashions every where. There was once a spout- 
ing club, perhaps it is in favour still ; before it was 
the music-room. Once geology was all the rage ; 
now it is theology ; soon it will be architecture, or 
medieval antiquities, or editions and codices. Each 
wears out in its turn ; all depends on one or two 
active men ; but the secretary takes a wife, or the 
professor gets a stall ; and then the meetings are 
called irregularly, and nothing is done in them, and 
so gradually the affair dwindles and dies." 

Sheffield asked whether the present movement 
had not spread too widely through the country for 
such a termination ; he did not know much about it 
himself, but the papers were full of it, and it was the 
talk of every neighbourhood ; it was not confined to 

" I don't know about the country," said Mr. 
Malcolm, " that is a large question ; but it has not 
the elements of stability here. These gentlemen will 
take livings and marry, and that will be the end of 
the business. I am not speaking against them ; they 
are, I believe, very respectable men ; but they are 
riding on the spring-tide of a fashion." 

Charles said it was a nuisance to see the party- 
spirit it introduced. " Oxford ought to be a place 
of quiet and study; peace and the Muses always 


went together ; whereas there was talk, talk in every 
quarter. A man could not go about his duties in a 
natural way, and take every one as he came, but was 
obliged to take part in questions, and to consider 
points, which he might wish to put from him, and 
must sport an opinion when he really had none to 

Mr. Malcolm assented in a half-absent way, look- 
ing at the view before him, and seemingly enjoying 
it. " People call this county ugly," he said, " and 
perhaps it is ; but, whether I am used to it or no, I 
always am pleased with it. The lights are always 
new ; and thus the landscape, if it deserves the name, 
is always presented in a new dress. I have known 
Shotover there take the most opposite hues, some- 
times purple, sometimes a bright saffron or tawny 
orange." Here he stopped : " Yes, you speak of 
party-spirit ; very true, there's a great deal of it. 
No, I don't think there's much," he continued, rous- 
ing ; " certainly there is more division just at this 
minute in Oxford, but there always is division, al- 
ways rivalry. The separate Societies have their own 
interests and honour to maintain, and quarrel, as the 
orders do in the Church of Rome. No, that's too 
grand a comparison ; rather, Oxford is like an alms- 
house for clergymen's widows. Self-importance, 
jealousy, tittle-tattle, are the order of the day. It 
has always been so in my time. Two great ladies, 
Mrs. Vice-Chancellor and Mrs. Divinity-Professor 
can't agree, and have followings respectively : or 
Vice-Chancellor himself, being a new broom, sweeps 
all the young masters clean out of the Convocation 


House, to their great indignation ; or Mr. Slaney, 
Dean of St. Peter's, does not scruple to say, in a 
stage-coach, that Mr. Wood is no scholar ; on which 
the said Wood calls him in return ' slanderous Slaney ; 
or the elderly Mr. Barge, late Senior Fellow of St. 
Michael's, thinks that his pretty bride has not been 
received with due honours ; or Dr. Crotchet is for 
years kept out of his destined bishopric by a sinis- 
ter influence ; or Mr. Professor Carraway has been 
infamously shewn up in the ' Edinburgh' by an idle 
fellow whom he plucked in the schools ; or (majora 
movemus) three colleges interchange a mortal vow of 
opposition to a fourth ; or the young working mas- 
ters conspire against the Heads. Now, however, 
we are improving ; if we must quarrel, let it be the 
rivalry of intellect and conscience, rather than of 
interests or temper ; let us contend for things, not 
for shadows." 

Sheffield was pleased at this, and ventured to 
say that the present state of things was more real, 
and therefore more healthy. Mr. Malcolm did not 
seem to hear him, for he did not reply; and, as 
they were now approaching the bridge again, the 
conversation stopped. Sheffield looked slyly at 
Charles, as Mr. Malcolm proceeded with them up 
High Street ; and both of them had the trmmph and 
the amusement of being convoyed safely past a Proc- 
tor, who was patrolling it, under the protection of a 



The walk to Oxley had not been the first or the 
second occasion on which Charles had, in one shape 
or other, encountered Sheffield's views about reali- 
ties and shams ; and his preachments had begun to 
make an impression on him ; that is, he felt that 
there was truth in them at bottom, and a truth new 
to him. He was not a person to let a truth sleep in 
his mind, though it did not vegetate very quickly ; 
it was sure ultimately to be pursued into its conse- 
quences, and to affect his existing opinions. In the 
instance before us, he saw Sheffield's principle was 
more or less antagonistic to his own favourite maxim, 
that it was a duty to be pleased with every one. 
Contradictions could not both be real : when an af- 
firmative was true, a negative was false. All doc- 
trines could not be equally sound : there was a right 
and a wrong. The theory of dogmatic truth, as op- 
posed to latitudinarianism (he did not know their 
names or their history, or suspect what was going 
on in him), had, in the course of these his first 
terms, gradually begun to energise in his mind. Let 
him but see the absurdities of the latitudinarian 
principle, when carried out, and he is likely to be 
still more opposed to it. 

Bateman, among his peculiarities, had a notion 
that bringing persons of contrary sentiments together 
was the hkeliest way of making a party agreeable, 
or at least useful. He had done his best, though 


without much success, to give his breakfast, to which 
our friends were invited, this element of perfection ; 
not, however, to his own satisfaction ; for, with all 
his efforts, he had but picked up Mr. Freeborn, a 
young Evangelical Master, with whom Sheffield was 
acquainted ; a sharp but not very wise freshman, 
who, having been spoilt at home, and having plenty 
of money, professed to be (Esthetic, and kept his col- 
lege authorities in a perpetual fidget lest he should 
some morning wake up a Papist ; and a friend of his, 
a nice modest-looking youth, who, like a mouse, had 
keen darting eyes, and ate his bread and butter in 
absolute silence. 

They had hardly seated themselves, and, while 
Sheffield was pouring out coffee, and a plate of muf- 
fins was going round, Bateman was engaged, sauce- 
pan in hand, in the operation of landing his eggs, 
now boiled, upon the table, when our flighty youth, 
whose name was White, observed how beautiful the 
Catholic custom was of making eggs the emblem of 
the Easter-festival. " It is truly Catholic," said he ; 
" for it is retained in parts of England, you have it 
in Russia, and in Rome itself, where an egg is served 
up on every plate through the Easter-week, after 
being, I believe, blessed ; and it is as expressive and 
significant, as it is Catholic." " Beautiful indeed !" 
said their host ; " so pretty, so sweet ; I wonder 
whether our Reformers thought of it, or the profound 
Hooker, — he was full of types, — or Jewell. You 
recollect the staff Jewell gave him : that was a type. 
It was like the sending of Elisha's staff by his ser- 
vant to the dead chdd." " Oh, my dear, dear Bate- 


man," cried Sheffield, " you are making Hooker 
Gehazi." "That's just the upshot of such trifling," 
said Mr. Freeborn ; " you never know where to find 
it; it proves any thing and disproves any thing." 
" That, is only till it's sanctioned," said White ; 
"when the Catholic Church sanctions it, we're safe." 
"Yes, we're safe," said Bateman; "it's safe when 
it's Catholic." " Yes," continued White, " things 
change their nature altogether, when they are taken 
up by the Catholic Church : that's how we are al- 
lowed to do evil, that good may come." "What's 
that ?" said Bateman. " Why," said White, " the 
Church makes evil good." " My dear White," said 
Bateman gravely, " that's going too far ; it is in- 
deed." Mr. Freeborn suspended his breakfast ope- 
rations, and sat back in his chair. " Why," conti- 
nued White, " is not idolatry wrong ? yet image- 
worship is right." Mr. Freeborn was in a state of 
collapse. " That's a bad instance, White," said 
Sheffield ; " there are people in the world who are 
uncatholic enough to think image-worship wrong, as 
well as idolatry." " A mere Jesuitical distinction," 
said Freeborn with emotion. " Well," said White, 
who did not seem in great awe of the young M.A., 
though some years, of course, his senior, " I will 
take a better instance : who does not know that 
baptism gives grace ? yet there were heathen bap- 
tismal rites, which, of course, were devdish." " I 
should not be disposed, Mr. White, to grant you so 
much as you would wish," said Freeborn, " about 
the virtue of baptism." " Not about Christian bap- 
tism?" asked White. " It is easy," answered Free- 


born, " to mistake the sign for the thing signified." 
" Not about Catholic baptism ?" repeated White. 
"Catholic baptism is a mere deceit and delusion," 
retorted Mr. Freeborn. " Oh, my dear Freeborn," 
interposed Bateman, " now you are going too far ; 
you are indeed." " Catholic, Catholic ; I don't know 
what you mean," said Freeborn. "I mean," said 
White, "the baptism of the One Catholic Church, 
of which the Creed speaks: it's quite intelligible." 
"But what do you mean by the Catholic Church?" 
asked Freeborn. " The Anglican," answered Bate- 
man ; "The Roman," answered White; both in the 
same breath. There was a general laugh. "There 
is nothing to laugh at," said Bateman ; " Anglican 
and Roman are one." " One ! impossible," cried 
Sheffield. " Much worse than impossible," observed 
Mr. Freeborn. "I should make a distinction," said 
Bateman ; "I should say, they are one, except the 
corruptions of the Romish Church." " That is, one 
except where they differ," said Sheffield. " Pre- 
cisely so," said Bateman. " Rather, J should say," 
objected Mr. Freeborn, " two except where they 
agree." " That's ju3t the issue," said Sheffield ; 
"Bateman says that the Churches are one except 
where they are two ; and Freeborn says that they 
are two except where they are one." 

It was a relief that at this moment the cook's boy 
came in with a dish of hot sausages ; but though a 
relief, it was not so much as a diversion ; the con- 
versation proceeded. Two persons did not like it : 
Freeborn, who was simply disgusted at the doctrine, 
and Reding, who thought it a bore ; yet it was the 


bad luck of Freeborn forthwith to set Charles against 
him, as well as the rest; and to remove the repug- 
nance which he had to engage in the dispute. Free- 
born, in fact, thought theology itself a mistake, as 
substituting, as he considered, worthless intellectual 
notions for the vital truths of religion ; so he now 
went on to observe, putting down his knife and 
fork, that it really was to him inconceivable, that 
real religion should depend on metaphysical dis- 
tinctions, or outward observances ; that it was quite 
a different thing in Scripture ; that Scripture said 
much of faith and holiness, but hardly a word about 
churches and forms. He proceeded to say that it 
was the great and evil tendency of the human mind 
to interpose between itself and its Creator some self- 
invented mediator, and it did not matter at all 
whether that human device was a rite, or a creed, or 
a form of prayer, or good works, or communion with 
particular Churches — all were but "flattering unc- 
tions to the soul," if they were considered necessary ; 
the only safe way of using them was to use them with 
the feeling that you might dispense with them ; that 
none of them went to the root of the matter, for 
that faith, that is, firm belief that God had forgiven 
you, was the one thing needful ; that where that one 
thing was present, every thing else was superfluous ; 
that where it was wanting, nothing else availed. So 
strongly did he hold this, that, (he confessed he put 
it pointedly, but still not untruly,) where true faith 
was present, a person might be any thing in pro- 
fession ; an Arminian, a Calvinist, an Episcopalian, 
a Presbyterian, a Swedenborgian — nay, a Unitarian 


— lie would go further, looking at White, a Papist, 
yet be in a state of salvation. 

Freeborn came out rather more strongly than in 
his sober moments he would have approved ; but he 
was a little irritated, and wished to have his turn of 
speaking. It was altogether a great testification. 
" Thank you for your liberality to the poor Papists," 
said White ; " it seems they are safe if they are 
hypocrites, professing to be Catholics, while they 
are Protestants in heart." " Unitarians, too," said 
Sheffield, "are debtors to your liberality ; it seems 
a man need not fear to believe too little, so that he 
feels a good deal." " Rather," said White, "if he 
believes himself forgiven, he need not believe any 
thing else." Reding put in his word ; he said that 
in the Prayer-book, belief in the Holy Trinity was 
represented, not as an accident, but as " before all 
things" necessary to salvation. " That's not a fair an- 
swer, Reding," said Sheffield ; " what Mr. Freeborn 
observed was, that there's no creed in the Bible ; 
and you answer that there is a creed in the Prayer- 
book." " Then the Bible says one thing, and the 
Prayer-book another," said Bateman. " No," an- 
swered Freeborn ; " the Prayer-book only deduces 
from Scripture; the Athanasian Creed is a human 
invention ; true, but human, and to be received, as 
one of the Articles expressly says, because ' founded 
on Scripture.' Creeds are useful in their place, so 
is the Church ; but neither Creed nor Church is 
religion." " Then why do you make so much of 
your doctrine of « faith only V " said Bateman ; " for 
that is not in Scripture, and is but a human deduc- 


tion ?" " My doctrine !" cried Freeborn ; " why it's 
in the Articles ; the Articles expressly say that we 
are justified by faith only." " The Articles are not 
Scripture any more than the Prayer-book," said 
Sheffield. " Nor do the Articles say that the doc- 
trine they propound is necessary for salvation," 
added Bateman. 

All this was very unfair on Freeborn, though he 
had provoked it. Here were four persons on him 
at once, and the silent fifth apparently a sympathiser. 
Sheffield talked through malice ; White from habit ; 
Reding came in because he could not help it ; and 
Bateman spoke on principle ; he had a notion that 
he was improving Freeborn's views by this process 
of badgering. At least he did not improve his tem- 
per, which was suffering. Most of the party were 
undergraduates ; he, Freeborn, was a Master : it 
was too bad of Bateman. He finished in silence his 
sausage, which had got quite cold. The conver- 
sation flagged ; there was a rise in toast and muffins ; 
coffee-cups were put aside, and tea flowed freely. 


Freeborn did not like to be beaten ; he began 
again. Religion, he said, was a matter of the heart ; 
no one could interpret Scripture rightly, whose 
heart was not right. Till our eyes were enlightened, 
to dispute about the sense of Scripture, to attempt 


to deduce from Scripture, was beating about the 
bush : it was like the blind disputing about colours. 
" If this is true," said Bateman, " no one ought to 
argue about religion at all ; but you were the first 
to do so, Freeborn." " Of course," answered Free- 
born, " those who have found the truth are the very 
persons to argue, for they have the gift." " And the 
very last persons to persuade," said Sheffield ; " for 
they have the gift all to themselves." " Therefore 
true Christians should argue with each other, and 
with no one else," said Bateman. " But those are 
the very persons who don't want it," said Sheffield ; 
" reasoning must be for the unconverted, not for the 
converted. It is the means of seeking." Freeborn 
persisted that the reason of the unconverted was car- 
nal, and that such could not understand Scripture. 
" I have always thought," said Reding, "that reason 
was a general gift, though faith is a special and per- 
sonal one. If faith is really rational, all ought to see 
that it is rational ; else, from the nature of the case, 
it is not rational." " But St. Paul says," answered 
Freeborn, " that ' to the natural man the things of 
the Spirit are foolishness.' " " But how are we to 
arrive at truth at all," said Reding, *' except by rea- 
son? it is the appointed method for our guidance. 
Brutes go by instinct, men by reason." 

They had fallen on a difficult subject; all were 
somewhat puzzled, except White, who had not been 
attending, and was simply wearied ; he now inter- 
posed. " It would be a dull world," he said, " if 
men went by reason : they may think they do, but 
they don't. Really, they are led by their feelings, 


their affections, by the sense of the beautiful, and 
the good, and the holy. Religion is the beautiful ; 
the clouds, sun, and sky, the fields and the woods, 
are religion." " This would make all religions 
true," said Freeborn, " good and bad." " No," 
answered White, " heathen rites are bloody and im- 
pure, not beautiful; and Mahometanism is as cold 
and as dry as any Calvinistic meeting. The Ma- 
hometans have no altars or priests, nothing but a 
pulpit and a preacher." " Like St. Mary's," said 
Sheffield. " Very like," said White ; "we have no 
life or poetry in the Church of England ; the Ca- 
tholic Church alone is beautiful. You would see 
what I mean if you went into a foreign cathedral, or 
even into one of the Catholic churches in our large 
towns. The celebrant, deacon, and subdeacon, aco- 
lytes with lights, the incense, and the chanting — 
all combines to one end, one act of worship. You 
feel it is really a worshipping ; every sense, eyes, 
ears, smell, are made to know that worship is going 
on. The laity on the floor saying their beads, or 
making their acts ; the choir singing out the Kyrie . 
and the priest and his assistants bowing low, and 
saying the Confiteor to each other. This is worship, 
and it is far above reason." This was spoken with 
all his heart ; but it was quite out of keeping with 
the conversation which had preceded it, and White's 
poetry was almost as disagreeable to the party as 
Freeborn's prose. " White, you should turn Ca- 
tholic out and out," said Sheffield. " My dear good 
fellow," said Bateman, " think what you are saying. 
You can't really have gone to a schismatical chapel. 


Oh, for shame !" Freeborn observed gravely, that 
if the two Churches were one, as had been main- 
tained, he could not see, do what he would, why it 
was wrong to go to and fro from one to the other. 
" You forget," said Bateman to White, " you have, 
or might have, all this in your own Church, without 
the Romish corruptions." " As to the Romish cor- 
ruptions," answered White, " I know very little 
about them." Freeborn groaned audibly. " I know 
very little about them," repeated White, eagerly, 
" very little ; but what is that to the purpose ? We 
must take things as we find them. I don't like what 
is bad in the Catholic Church, if there is bad, but 
what is good. I do not go to it for what is bad, but 
for what is good. You can't deny that what I ad- 
mire is very good and beautiful. You try to intro- 
duce it into your own Church. You would give your 
ears, you know you would, to hear the Dies ira." 
Here a general burst of laughter took place. White 
was an Irishman. It was a happy interruption ; the 
party rose up from table, and a tap at that minute 
which sounded at the door succeeded in severing 
the thread of the conversation. 

It was a printseller's man with a large book of 
plates. " Well timed," said Bateman ; — " put them 
down, Baker ; or rather give them me ; — J can take 
the opinion of you men on a point I have much at 
heart. You know I wanted you, Freeborn, to go 
with me to see my chapel ; Sheffield and Reding 
have looked into it. Well now, just see here." He 
opened the portfolio ; it contained views of the 
Campo Santo at Pisa. The leaves were slowly 


turned over in silence, the spectators partly ad- 
miring, partly not knowing what to think, partly 
wondering what was coming. " What do you think 
my plan is?" he continued. "You twitted me, Shef- 
field, because my chapel would be useless. Now 
I mean to get a cemetery attached to it ; there is 
plenty of land ; and then the chapel will become 
a chantry. But now, what will you say if we 
have a copy of these splendid medieval monuments 
round the burial-place, both sculpture and painting ? 
Now, Sheffield, Mr. Critic, what do you say to that?" 
" A most admirable plan," said Sheffield, " and 
quite removes my objections. ... A chantry ! what 
is that? Don't they say Mass in it for the dead?" 
" Oh, no, no, no," said Bateman, in fear of Freeborn ; 
" we'll have none of your Popery. It will be a 
simple guileless chapel, in which the Church-service 
will be read." Meanwhile Sheffield was slowly 
turning over the plates. He stopped atone. "What 
will you do with that figure 1" he said, pointing to a 
drawing of the Madonna. " Oh, it will be best, most 
prudent, to leave it out ; certainly, certainly." Shef- 
field soon began again : " But look here, my good 
fellow, what do you do with these saints and angels ? 
Do see, why here's a complete legend ; do you 
mean to have this? Here's a set of miracles, and 
a woman invoking a saint in heaven." Bateman 
looked cautiously at them, and did not answer. He 
would have shut the book, but Sheffield wished to 
see some more. Meanwhile he said, " Oh, yes, 
true, there are some things ; but I have an expe- 
dient for all this ; I mean to make it all allegorical. 



The Blessed Virgin shall be the Church, and the 
saints shall be cardinal and other virtues ; and as 
to that saint's life, St. Ranieri's, it shall be a Ca- 
tholic « Pilgrim's Progress.' " " Good ; then you 
must drop all these Popes and Bishops, copes and 
chalices," said Sheffield ; " and have their names 
written under the rest, that people mayn't take them 
for saints and angels. Perhaps you had better have 
scrolls from the mouths, in old English. This St. 
Thomas is stout ; make him say, ' I am Mr. Dread- 
nought,' or ' I am Giant Despair;' and, since this 
beautiful saint bears a sort of dish, make her ' Mrs. 
Creature Comfort.' But look here," he continued, 
" a whole set of devils ; are these to be painted up ?" 
Bateman attempted forcibly to shut the book ; Shef- 
field went on : " St. Antony's temptation ; what's 
this ? Here's the fiend in the shape of a cat on a 
wine-barrel." " Really, really," said Bateman, dis- 
gusted, and getting possession of it, " you are quite 
offensive, quite. We will look at them when you 
are more serious." Sheffield indeed was very pro- 
voking, and Bateman more good-humoured than 
many persons would have been in his place. Mean- 
while Freeborn, who had had his gown in his hand 
the last two minutes, nodded to his host, and took 
his departure by himself; and White and Willis soon 
followed in company. 

" Really," said Bateman to Sheffield, when they 
were gone, " you and White, each in his own way, 
are so very rash in your mode of speaking, and be- 
fore other people too. I wished to teach Freeborn 
a little good Catholicism, and you have spoilt all. 


I hoped something would have come of this break- 
fast. But only think of White ! it will all out. 
Freeborn will tell it to his set. It is very bad, very 
bad indeed. And you, my friend, are not much 
better; never serious. What could you mean by 
saying that our Church is not one with the Romish ? 
It was giving Freeborn such an advantage." Shef- 
field looked provokingly easy ; and, leaning with 
hi* back against the mantelpiece, and his coat-tad 
almost playing with the spout of the kettle, replied, 
" You had a most awkward team to drive." Then 
he added, looking sideways at him with his head 
back, " And why had you, most correct of men, 
the audacity to say that the English Church and the 
Roman Church were one V " It must be so," 
answered Bateman ; " there is but one Church — 
the Creed says so ; would you make two ?" " I 
don't speak of doctrine," said Sheffield, " but of 
fact. I didn't mean to say that there were two 
churches ; nor to deny that there was one Church. 
I but denied the fact, that what are evidently two 
bodies were one body." Bateman thought awhile ; 
and Charles employed himself in scraping down the 
soot from the back of the chimney with the poker. 
He did not wish to speak ; but he was not sorry to 
listen to such an argument, 

" My good fellow," said Bateman, in a tone of 
instruction, " you are making a distinction between 
a Church and a body, which I don't quite compre- 
hend. You say that there are two bodies, and yet 
but one Church. If so, the Church is not a body, 
but something abstract, a mere name, a general idea ; 


is that your meaning ? if so, you are an honest Cal- 
vinist." " You are another," answered Sheffield ; 
" for if you make two visible Churches, English and 
Romish, to be one Church, that one Church must be 
invisible, not visible. Thus, if I hold an abstract 
Church, you hold an invisible one." "I do not see 
that," said Bateman. " Prove the two Churches to 
be one," said Sheffield, " and then I'll prove some- 
thing else." " Some paradox," said Bateman. "Of 
course," answered Sheffield, "a huge one; but yours, 
not mine. Prove the English and Romish Churches 
to be in any sense one, and I will prove by parallel 
arguments that in the same sense we and the Wes- 
leyans are one." 

This was a fair challenge. Bateman, however, 
suddenly put on a demure look, and was silent. 
"We are on sacred subjects," he said at length, in a 
subdued tone, " we are on very sacred subjects ; we 
must be reverent," and he drew a very long face. 
Sheffield laughed out, nor could Reding stand it. 
"What is it?" cried Sheffield; "don't be hard with 
me ; what have I done ? Where did the sacredness 
begin? I eat my words." " Oh, he meant nothing," 
said Charles, "indeed he did not; he's more serious 
than he seems ; do answer him ; I am interested." 
" Really I do wish to treat the subject gravely," said 
Sheffield ; "I will begin again. I am very sorry, 
indeed I am. Let me but put the objection more re- 
verently." Bateman relaxed : " My good Sheffield," 
he said, " the thing is irreverent, not the manner. It 
is irreverent to liken your holy mother to the Wes- 
leyan schismatics." " I repent, I do indeed," said 


Sheffield ; "it was a wavering of faith ; it was very 
unseemly, I confess it. What can I say more ? Look 
at me ; won't this do 1 But now tell me, do tell me, 
how are we one body with the Romanists, yet the 
Wesleyans not one body with us?" Bateman looked 
at him, and was satisfied with the expression of his 
face. " It's a strange question for you to ask," he 
said ; " I fancied you were a sharper fellow. Don't 
you see that we have the apostolical succession as 
well as the Romanists ?" " But Romanists say," 
answered Sheffield, " that that is not enough for 
unity ; that we ought to be in communion with the 
Pope." "That's their mistake," answered Bateman. 
" That's just what the Wesleyans say of us," re- 
torted Sheffield, " when we won't acknowledge their 
succession ; they say it's our mistake." " Their suc- 
cession !" cried Bateman, "they have no succession." 
" Yes, they have," said Sheffield, " they have a 
ministerial succession." " It isn't apostolical," an- 
swered Bateman. " Yes, but it is evangelical, a 
succession of doctrine," said Sheffield. " Doctrine! 
Evangelical!" cried Bateman, " who ever heard! 
that's not enough ; doctrine is not enough without 
bishops." " And succession is not enough without 
the Pope," answered Sheffield. " They act against 
the Bishops," said Bateman, not quite seeing whither 
he was going. "And we act against the Pope," said 
Sheffield. " We say that the Pope isn't necessary," 
said Bateman. " And they say that Bishops are not 
necessary," returned Sheffield. 

They were out of breath, and paused to see 
where they stood. Presently Bateman said, " My 


good sir, this is a question oifact, not of argumen- 
tative cleverness. The question is, whether it is not 
true that Bishops are necessary to the notion of a 
Church, and whether it is not false that Popes are 
necessary." " No, no," said Sheffield, " the ques- 
tion is this, whether obedience to our Bishops is not 
necessary to make Wesleyans one body with us, and 
obedience to their Pope necessary to make us one 
body with the Romanists. You maintain the one, 
and deny the other ; I maintain both. Maintain 
both, or deny both : I am consistent ; you are in- 
consistent." Bateman was puzzled. " In a word," 
Sheffield added, " succession is not unity, any more 
than doctrine." " Not unity ? What then is unity ?" 
asked Bateman. " Oneness of government," an- 
swered Sheffield. 

Bateman thought awhile. " The idea is prepos- 
terous," he said : " here we have possession ; here we 
are established since King Lucius's time, or since 
St. Paul preached here ; filling the island ; one con- 
tinuous Church ; with the same .territory, the same 
succession, the same hierarchy, the same civil and 
political position, the same churches. Yes," he 
proceeded, " we have the very same fabrics, the 
memorials of a thousand years, doctrine stamped 
and perpetuated in stone ; all the mystical teaching 
of the old saints. What have Methodists to do with 
Catholic rites ? with altars, with sacrifice, with rood- 
lofts, with fonts, with niches? they call it all su- 
perstition." " Don't be angry with me, Bateman," 
said Sheffield, " and, before going, I will put forth 
a parable. Here's the Church of England, as like a 


Protestant Establishment as it can stare ; Bishops 
and people, all but a few like yourselves, call it Pro- 
testant ; the living body calls itself Protestant ; the 
hving body abjures Catholicism, flings off the name 
and the thing, hates the Church of Rome, laughs at 
sacramental power, despises the Fathers, is jealous of 
priestcraft, is a Protestant reality, is a Catholic sham. 
This existing reality, which is alive, and no mistake, 
you wish to top with a filagree-work of screens, 
dorsals, pastoral staffs, croziers, mitres, and the like. 
Now, most excellent Bateman, will you hear my 
parable ? will you be offended at it ?" SUence gave 
consent, and Sheffield proceeded. " Why, once on 
a time, a negro boy, when his master was away, 
stole into his wardrobe, and determined to make 
himself fine at his master's expense. So he was 
presently seen in the streets, naked as usual, but 
strutting up and down, with a cocked hat on his 
head, and a pair of white kid gloves on his hands." 
"Away with you! get out, you graceless, hopeless 
fellow !" said Bateman, discharging the sofa-bolster 
at his head. Meanwhile Sheffield ran to the door, 
and quickly found himself with Charles in the street 


Sheffield and Charles may go their way ; but we 
must follow White and Willis out of Bateman' s 
lodgings. It was a Saint's day, and they had no 


lectures ; they walked arm and arm along Broad 
Street, evidently very intimate, and Willis found his 
voice : " I can't bear that Freeborn," said he, " he's 
such a prig ; and I like him the less because I am 
obliged to know him." " You knew him in the 
country, I think ?" said White. " In consequence, 
he has several times had me to his spiritual tea- 
parties, and has introduced me to old Mr. Grimes, a 
good, kind-hearted old fogie, but an awful evangelical, 
and his wife worse. Grimes is the old original reli- 
gious tea-man, and Freeborn imitates him. They get 
together as many men as they can, perhaps twenty, 
freshmen, bachelors, and masters, who sit in a circle, 
with cups and saucers in their hands and hassocks 
at their knees. Some insufferable person of Capel 
Hall or St. Mark's, who hardly speaks English, 
under pretence of asking Mr. Grimes some divinity 
question, holds forth on original sin, or justifica- 
tion, or assurance, monopolising the conversation. 
Then tea-things go, and a 'portion of Scripture' 
comes instead ; and old Grimes expounds ; very good 
it is doubtless, though he is a layman. He's a good 
old soul ; but no one in the room can stand it ; even 
Mrs. Grimes nods over her knitting, and some of 
the dear brothers breathe very audibly. Mr. Grimes, 
however, hears nothing but himself. At length he 
stops ; his hearers wake up, and the hassocks begin. 
Then we go; and Mr. Grimes and the St. Mark's 
man call it a profitable evening. I can't make out 
why any one goes twice ; yet some men never miss." 
"They all go on faith," said White; "faith in Mr. 
Grimes." "Faith in old Grimes!" said Willis ; " an 



old half-pay lieutenant !" " Here's a church open," 
said White ; "that's odd ; let's go in." 

They entered ; an old woman was dusting the 
pews as if for service. "That will be all set right," 
said Willis ; " we must have no women, but sacristans 
and servers." "Then, you know, all these pews 
will go to the right about. Did you ever see a finer 
church for a function?" "Where would you put 
the sacristy?" said Willis; "that closet is meant 
for the vestry, but would never be large enough." 
" That depends on the number of altars the church 
admits," answered White ; " each altar must have its 
own table and wardrobe in the sacristy." "One," 
said Willis, counting, "where the pulpit stands, 
that'll be the high altar ; one quite behind, that may 
be Our Lady's ; two on each side the chancel — four 
already ; to whom do you dedicate them 1" " The 
church is not wide enough for those side ones," ob- 
jected White. " Oh, but it is," said Willis ; " I have 
seen, abroad, altars with only one step to them, and 
they need not be veiy broad. I think, too, this wall 
admits of an arch — look at the depth of the window ; 
that would be a gain of room." "No," persisted 
White ; " the chancel is too narrow ;" and he began 
to measure the floor with his pocket-handkerchief : 
" What should you say is the depth of an altar from 
the wall ?" he asked. 

On looking up, he saw some ladies in the church 
whom he and Willis knew — the pretty Miss Boltons ; 
— very Catholic girls, and really kind, charitable 
persons into the bargain. We cannot add, that they 
were much wiser at that time than the two young 



gentlemen whom they now encountered ; and if any 
fair reader thinks our account of them a reflection 
on Catholic-minded ladies generally, we beg dis- 
tinctly to say, that we by no means put them forth as 
a type of a class ; that among such persons were to 
be found, as we know well, the gentlest spirits and 
the tenderest hearts ; and that nothing short of severe 
fidelity to historical truth keeps us from adorning 
these two young persons in particular with that pru- 
dence and good sense with which so many such laches 
were endowed. These two sisters had open hands, 
if they had not wise heads ; and their object in enter- 
ing the church (which was not the church of their own 
parish) was to see the old woman, who was at once 
a subject and organ of their bounty, and to say a 
word about her little grand-children, in whom they 
were interested. As may be supposed, they did not 
know much of matters ecclesiastical, and they knew 
less of themselves ; and the latter defect White could 
not supply, though he was doing, and had done, his 
best to remedy the former deficiency ; and every 
meeting did a little. 

The two parties left the church together, and the 
gentlemen saw the ladies home. "We were ima- 
gining, Miss Bolton," White said, walking at a re- 
spectful distance from her, " we were imagining St. 
James's a Catholic church, and trying to arrange 
things as they ought to be." "What was your first 
reform?" asked Miss Bolton. "I fear," answered 
White, " it would fare hard with your protegee, the 
old lady who dusts out the pews." "Why, cer- 
tainly," said Miss Bolton, "because there would be 


no pews to dust." " But not only in office, but in 
person, or rather in character, she must make her 
exit from the church," said White. 'Impossible," 
said Miss Bolton ; "are women, then, to remain Pro- 
testants ?" " Oh, no," answered White, " the good 
lady will re-appear, only in another character ; she 
will be a widow." " And who will take her present 
place?" "A sacristan," answered White; "a sa- 
cristan in a cotta. Do you like the short cotta or the 
long?" he continued, turning to the younger lady. 
"I?" answered Miss Charlotte; "I always forget, 
but I think you told us the Roman was the short 
one ; I'm for the short cotta." " You know, Char- 
lotte," said Miss Bolton, " that there's a great reform 
going on in England in ecclesiastical vestments." 
" I hate all reforms," answered Charlotte, " from 
the Reformation downwards. Besides, we have got 
some way in our cope ; have you seen it, Mr. White 1 
it's such a sweet pattern." " Have you determined 
what you mean to do with it X" asked Willis. " Time 
enough to think of that," said Charlotte ; " it'll take 
four years to finish." ** Four years !" cried White ; 
" we shall be all real Catholics by then ; England 
will be converted." " It will be done just in time 
for the Bishop," said Charlotte. " Oh, it's not good 
enough for him," said Miss Bolton ; " but it may do 
in church for the Asperges. How different all things 
will be !" continued she ; " yet I don't quite like, 
though, the idea of a Cardinal in Oxford. Must we 
be so very Roman 1 I don't see why we might not 
be quite Catholic without the Pope." " Oh, you need 
not be afraid," said White, sagely ; " things don't go 


so apace. Cardinals are not so cheap." " Cardinals 
have so much state and stiffness," said Miss Bolton ; 
" I hear they never walk without two servants be- 
hind them ; and they always leave the room directly 
dancing begins." " Well, I think Oxford must be 
just cut out for Cardinals," said Miss Charlotte ; 
" can any thing be duller than the President's par- 
ties ? I can fancy Dr. Bone a Cardinal, as he walks 
round the Parks." " Oh, it's the genius of the Ca- 
tholic Church," said White ; " you will understand it 
better in time. No one is his own master ; even the 
Pope cannot do as he will ; he dines by himself, and 
speaks by precedent." " Of course he does," said 
Charlotte, " for he is infallible." " Nay, if he makes 
mistakes in the functions," continued White, " he is 
obliged to write them down and confess them, lest 
they should be drawn into precedents." '* And he 
is obliged, during a function, to obey the master of 
ceremonies, against his own judgment," said Willis. 
" Didn't you say the Pope confessed, Mr. White?" 
asked Miss Bolton ; " it has always puzzled me whe- 
ther the Pope was obliged to confess like another 
man." " Oh, certainly," answered White, " every 
one confesses." " Well," said Charlotte, " I can't 
fancy Mr. Hurst of St. Peter's, who comes here to 
sing glees, confessing, or some of the grave Heads of 
houses, who bow so stiffly." *' They will all have 
to confess," said White. " All ?" asked Miss Bol- 
ton ; " you don't mean converts confess ? I thought 
it was only old Catholics." There was a little 

" And what will the Heads of houses be?" asked 



Miss Charlotte. "Abbots or Superiors," answered 
White ; " they will bear crosses ; and when they say 
Mass, there will be a lighted candle in addition." 
" What a good portly abbot the Vice-Chancellor will 
make !" said Miss Bolton. " Oh, no ; he's too short 
for an abbot," said her sister ; " but you have left 
out the Chancellor himself: you seem to have pro- 
vided for every one else ; what will become of 
him ?" " The Chancellor is my difficulty," said 
White gravely. " Make him a Knight-Templar," 
said Willis. " The Duke's a queer hand," said 
White, still thoughtfully ; " there's no knowing what 
he'll come too. A Knight-Templar — yes; Malta is 
now English property ; he might revive the order." 
The ladies both laughed. " But you have not com- 
pleted your plan, Mr. White," said Miss Bolton : 
" the Heads of houses have got wives ; how can they 
become monks ?" " Oh, the wives will go into con- 
vents," said White ; " Willis and I have been making 
inquiries in the High Street, and they are most satis- 
factory. Some of the houses there were once uni- 
versity-halls and inns, and will easily turn back into 
convents : all that will be wanted is grating to the 
windows." " Have you any notion what order they 
ought to join ?" said Miss Charlotte. " That de- 
pends on themselves," said White ; " no compul- 
sion whatever must be put on them. They are the 
judges. But it would be useful to have two con- 
vents — one of an active order, and one contempla- 
tive : Ursuline, for instance, and Carmelite of St. 
Theresa's reform." 

Hitherto their conversation had been on the 


verge of jest and earnest ; now it took a more pen- 
sive, or even tenderer tone. " The nuns of St. The- 
resa are very strict, I believe, Mr. White," said Miss 
Bolton. "Yes," he made reply; "I have fears for 
the Mrs. Wardens and Mrs. Principals who under- 
take it." M Perhaps younger persons," she said 
timidly, " might more fitly lead the way." They 
had got home, and White politely rang the bell. 
" Young persons,'' said White, " are too delicate 
for such a sacrifice." She was silent ; presently 
she said, " And what will you be, Mr. White ?" 
" I know not," he answered ; " I have thought of 
the Cistercians : they never speak." " Oh, the dear 
Cistercians!" she said; " St. Bernard, wasn't it? — 
sweet heavenly man, and so young ! I have seen his 
picture : such eyes !" White was a good-looking 
man. The nun and monk looked at each other 
very respectfully, and bowed ; the other pair went 
through a similar ceremony ; then it was performed 
diagonally. The two ladies entered their home ; the 
two gentlemen retired. 

We must follow the former up-stairs. When 
they entered the drawing-room, they found their 
mother sitting at the window in her bonnet and 
shawl, dipping into a chance volume in that un- 
settled state which implies that a person is occu- 
pied, if it may be so called, in waiting, more than 
in any thing else. " My dear children," she said as 
they entered, " where have you been 1 the bells 
have stopped a good quarter of an hour : I fear we 
must give up going to church this morning." " Im- 
possible, dear mamma," answered Miss Bolton ; "we 


went out punctually at half-past nine : we did not 
stop two minutes at your worsted-shop ; and here we 
are back again." " The only thing we did besides," 
said Charlotte, " was to look in at St. James's, as 
the door was open, to say a word or two to poor 
old Wiggins. Mr. White was there, and his friend 
Mr. Willis ; and they saw us home." " Oh, I un- 
derstand," answered Mrs. Bolton ; "that is the way 
when young gentlemen and ladies get together : but, 
at any rate, we are late for church." " Oh, no," 
said Charlotte, " let us set out directly ; we shall 
get in by the first lesson." " My dear child, how 
can you propose such a thing?" said her mother; 
" I would not do so for any consideration ; it is so 
very disgraceful. Better not go at all." "Oh, 
dearest mamma," said the elder sister, " this cer- 
tainly is a prejudice. Why always come in at one 
time 1 there is something so formal in people com- 
ing in all at once, and waiting for each other. It is 
surely more reasonable to come in when you can : 
so many things may hinder persons." " Well, my 
dear Louisa," said her mother, "I like the old way. 
It used always to be said to us, Be in your seats 
before ' When the wicked man,' and at latest before 
the ' Dearly beloved.' That's the good old-fashioned 
way. And Mr. Jones and Mr. Pearson used always 
to sit at least five minutes in the desk to give us 
some law, and used to look round before beginning ; 
and Mr. Jones used frequently to preach against 
late-comers. I can't argue, but it seems to me rea- 
sonable that good Christians should hear the whole 
service. They might as well go out before it's 


over." " Well, but, mamma," said Charlotte, " so 
it is abroad : they come in and go out when they 
please. It's so devotional." " My dear girl," said 
Mrs. Bolton, "I am too old to understand all this; 
it's beyond me. I suppose Mr. White has been 
saying all this to you. He's a good young man, 
very amiable and attentive. I have nothing to say 
against him, except that he is young, and he'll change 
his view of things when he gets older." " While 
we talk, time's going," said Louisa ; " is it quite 
impossible we should still go to church ?" " My 
dear Louisa, I would not walk up the aisle for the 
world ; positively I should sink into the earth : such 
a bad example. How can you dream of such a 
thing?" "Then, I suppose, nothing's to be done," 
said Louisa, taking off her bonnet; "but really it 
is very sad to make worship so cold and formal a 
thing. Twice as many people would go to church 
if they might be late." " Well, my dear, all things 
are changed now : in my younger days, Catholics 
were the formal people, and we were the devotional ; 
now it's just the reverse." " But isn't it so, dear 
mamma?*' said Charlotte ; "isn't it something much 
more beautiful, this continued concourse, flowing and 
ebbing, changing yet full, than a way of praying 
which is as wooden as the reading-desk? — it's so 
free and natural." "Free and easy, / think," said 
her mother ; "for shame, Charlotte ! how can you 
speak against the beautiful Church-service ! you 
pain me." "I don't," answered Charlotte ; "it's a 
mere puritanical custom, which is no more part of 
our Church than the pews are." " Common prayer 


is offered to all who can come," said Louisa ; " church 
should be a privilege, not a mere duty." " Well, my 
dear love, this is more than I can follow. There was 
young George Aston — he always left before the 
sermon ; and when taxed with it, he said he could 
not bear an heretical preacher : a boy of eighteen !" 
" But, dearest mamma," said Charlotte, " what is to 
be done when a preacher is heretical 1 what else can 
be done? — it's so distressing to a Catholic mind." 
"Catholic, Catholic!" cried Mrs. Bolton, rather vexed; 
" give me good old George the Third and the Pro- 
testant religion. Those were the times ! Every 
thing went on quietly then. We had no disputes or 
divisions ; no differences in families. But now it is 
all otherwise. My head is turned, I declare ; I hear 
so many strange, out-of-the-way things." 

The young ladies did not answer; one looked 
out of the window, the other prepared to leave the 
room. " Well, it's a disappointment to us all," said 
their mother; "you first hindered me going, then 
I have hindered you. But I suspect, dear Louisa, 
mine is the greater disappointment of the two." 
Louisa turned round from the window. " I value 
the Prayer-book as you cannot do, my love," she 
continued ; " for I have known what it is to one in deep 
affliction. May it be long, dearest girls, before you 
know it in a similar way ; but if affliction comes on 
you, depend on it, all these new fancies and fashions 
will vanish from you like the wind, and the good old 
Prayer-book alone will stand you in any stead." 
They were both touched. " Come, my dears ; I 
have spoken too seriously," she added. "Go and 


take your things off, and come and let us have some 
quiet work before luncheon-time." 


Some persons fidget at intellectual difficulties, and, 
successfully or not, are ever trying to solve them. 
Charles was of a different cast of temper ; a new 
idea was not lost on him, but it did not distress him, 
if it was obscure, or conflicted with his habitual view 
of things. He let it work its way and find its place, 
and shape itself within him, by the slow spontaneous 
action of the mind. Yet perplexity is not in itself 
a pleasant state ; and he would have hastened its 
removal, had he been able. 

By means of conversations, such as those which 
we have related, (to which many others might be 
added, which we spare the reader's patience,) and 
from the diversities of view which he met with in 
the University, he had now come, in the course of 
a year, to one or two conclusions, not very novel, 
but very important: — first, that there are a great 
many opinions in the world on the most momentous 
subjects ; secondly, that all are not equally true ; 
thirdly, that it is a duty to hold true opinions ; and, 
fourthly, that it is uncommonly difficult to get hold 
of them. He had been accustomed, as we have 
seen, to fix his mind on persons, not on opinions, 



and to determine to like what was good in every 
one ; but he had now come to perceive that, to say the 
least, it was not respectable to hold false opinions. 
It did not matter that such false opinions were sin- 
cerely held, — he could not feel that respect for a 
person who held what Sheffield called a sham, with 
which he regarded him who held a reality. White 
and Bateman were cases in point : they were very 
good fellows, but he could not endure their unreal 
way of talking, though they did not feel it to be 
unreal themselves. In like manner, if the Roman 
Catholic system was untrue, so far was plain, (put- 
ting aside higher considerations,) that a person who 
believed in the power of Saints, and prayed to them, 
was an actor in a great sham, let him be as sincere 
as he would. He mistook words for things, and so 
far forth, he could not respect him more than he 
respected White or Bateman. And so of a Uni- 
tarian ; if he believed the power of unaided human 
nature to be what it was not ; if by birth man is 
fallen, and he thought him upright, he was holding 
an absurdity. He might redeem and cover this 
blot by a thousand excellences, but a blot it would 
remain ; just as we should feel a handsome man 
disfigured by the loss of an eye or a hand. And so 
again, if a professing Christian made the Almighty 
a being of simple benevolence, and He was, on the 
contrary, what the Church of England teaches, a 
God who punishes for the sake of justice, such a 
person was making an idol or unreality the object of 
his religion, and (apart from more serious thoughts 
about him) he could not respect him. Thus the 


principle of dogmatism gradually became an essen- 
tial element in Charles's religious views. 

Gradually, and imperceptibly to himself ; for the 
thoughts which we have been tracing only came on 
him at spare times, and were taken up at intervals 
from the point at which they were laid down. His 
lectures and other duties of the place, his friends 
and recreations, were the staple of the day ; but 
there was this under-current, ever in motion, and 
sounding in his mental ear as soon as other sounds 
were hushed. As he dressed in the morning, as 
he sat under the beeches of his college -garden, 
when he strolled into the Meadow, when he went 
into the town to pay a bill or make a call, when he 
threw himself on his sofa after shutting his oak at 
night, thoughts cognate with those which have been 
described were busy within him. 

Discussions, however, and inquiries, as far as 
Oxford could afford matter for them, were for a 
while drawing to an end ; for Trinity-tide was now 
past, and the Commemoration was close at hand. 
On the Sunday before it, the University sermon 
happened to be preached by a distinguished person, 
whom that solemnity brought up to Oxford ; no less 
a man than the Very Rev. Dr. Brownside, the new 
Dean of Nottingham, some time Huntingdonian Pro- 
fessor of Divinity, and one of the acutest, if not 
soundest, academical thinkers of the day. He was 
a little, prim, smirking, be-spectacled man, bald in 
front, with curly black hair behind, somewhat pomp- 
ous in his manner, with a clear musical utterance, 
which enabled one to listen to him without effort. 


As a divine, he seemed never to have had any diffi- 
culty on any subject ; he was so clear or so shallow, 
that he saw to the bottom of all his thoughts ; or, 
since Dr. Johnson tells us that " all shallows are 
clear," we may perhaps distinguish him by both 
epithets. Revelation to him, instead of being the 
abyss of God's counsels, with its dim outlines and 
hrdad shadows, was a flat sunny plain, laid out with 
straight macadamised roads. Not, of course, that he 
denied the Divine incomprehensibility itself, with cer- 
tain heretics of old ; but he maintained that in Reve- 
lation all that was mysterious had been left out, and 
nothing given us but what was practical, and directly 
concerned us. It was, moreover, to him a marvel, 
that every one did not agree with him in taking this 
simple, natural view, which he thought almost self- 
evident ; and he attributed the phenomenon, which 
was by no means uncommon, to some want of clear- 
ness of head, or twist of mind, as the case might be. 
He was a popular preacher ; that is, though he had 
few followers, he had numerous hearers ; and on this 
occasion the church was overflowing with the young 
men of the place. 

He began his sermon by observing, that it was 
not a little remarkable that there were so few good 
reasoners in the world, considering that the discur- 
sive faculty was one of the characteristics of man's 
nature, as contrasted with brute animals. It had 
indeed been said that brutes reasoned ; but this was 
an analogical sense of the word ' reason,' and an 
instance of that very ambiguity of language, or con- 
fusion of thought, on which he was animadverting. 


In like manner, we say that the reason why the wind 
blows is, that there is a change of temperature in the 
atmosphere ; and the reason why the bells ring is, be- 
cause the ringers pull them ; but who would say that 
the wind reasons or that bells reason ? There was, 
he believed, no well-ascertained fact (an emphasis 
on the word fact) of brutes reasoning. It had been 
said, indeed, that that sagacious animal, the dog, if, 
in tracking his master, he met three ways, after 
smelling the two, boldly pursued the third without 
any such previous investigation ; which, if true, would 
be an instance of a disjunctive hypothetical syllo- 
gism. Also Dugald Stewart spoke of the case of 
a monkey cracking nuts behind a door, which not 
being a strict imitation of any thing which he could 
have actually seen, implied an operation of abstrac- 
tion, by which the clever brute had first ascended to 
the general notion of nut-crackers, which perhaps he 
had seen in a particular instance, in silver or in steel, 
at his master's table, and then descending, had em- 
bodied it, thus obtained, in the shape of an expedient 
of his own devising. This was what had been said : 
however, he might assume on the present occasion, 
that the faculty of reasoning was characteristic of the 
human species ; and this being the case, it certainly 
was remarkable that so few persons reasoned well. 

After this introduction, he proceeded to attribute 
to this defect the number of religious differences in 
the world. He said that the most celebrated ques- 
tions in religion were but verbal ones ; that the dis- 
putants did not know their own meaning, or that 
of their opponents ; and that a spice of good logic 


would have put an end to dissensions which had 
troubled the world for centuries, — would have pre- 
vented many a bloody war, many a fierce anathema, 
many a savage execution, and many a ponderous 
folio. He went on to imply that in fact there was 
no truth or falsehood in received dogmas in theo- 
logy ; that they were modes, neither good nor bad 
in themselves, but personal, national, or periodic, in 
which the intellect reasoned upon the great truths of 
religion ; that the fault lay, not in holding them, but 
in insisting on them, which was like insisting on a 
Hindoo dressing like a Fin, or a regiment of dra- 
goons using the boomarang. 

He proceeded to observe, that from what he had 
said, it was plain in what point of view the Anglican 
formularies were to be regarded ; viz. they were our 
mode of expressing everlasting truths, which might 
be as well expressed in other ways, as any correct 
thinker would be able to see. Nothing, then, was to 
be altered in them ; they were to be retained in their 
integrity ; but it was ever to be borne in mind that 
they were Anglican theology, not theology in the 
abstract ; and that though the Athanasian creed was 
good for us, it did not follow that it was good for our 
neighbours ; rather, that what seemed the very re- 
verse might suit others better, might be their mode 
of expressing the same truths. 

He concluded with one word in favour of Nesto- 
rius, two for Abelard, three for Luther, " that great 
mind," as he worded it, "who saw that churches, 
creeds, rites, persons, were nought in religion, and 
that the inward spirit, faith^ as he himself expressed 


it, " was all in all ;" and with a hint that nothing 
would go well in the University till this great prin- 
ciple was so far admitted, that they should, — not, 
indeed, give up their own distinctive formularies, 
no, — but consider their direct contradictories equally 
pleasing to the divine Author of Christianity. 

Charles did not understand the full drift of the 
sermon ; but he understood enough to make him feel 
that it was different from any sermon he had heard 
in his life. He more than doubted, whether, if his 
good father had heard it, he would not have made 
it an exception to his favourite dictum. He came 
away marvelling with himself what the preacher 
could mean, and whether he had misunderstood him. 
Did he mean that Unitarians were only bad reason- 
ers, and might be as good Christians as orthodox 
believers ? He could mean nothing else. But what 
if, after all, he was right ? He indulged the thought 
awhile. " Then every one is what Sheffield calls a 
sham, more or less; and we need not be annoyed at 
any one. Then I was right originally in wishing to 
take every one for what he was. Let me think ; 
every one a sham . . . shams are respectable, or 
rather no one is respectable. We can't do without 
some outward form of belief; one is not truer than 
another; that is, all are equally true . . . All are 
true . . . That is the better way of taking it ; none 
are shams, all are true. All are true ! impossible ; 
One as true as another ! why then it is as true that 
our Lord is a mere man, as that He is God. He 
could not possibly mean this ; what did he mean?" 

So Charles went on, painfully perplexed, yet 


out of this perplexity two convictions came upon 
him, the first of them painful too ; — that he could 
not take for gospel every thing that was said even 
by authorities of the place and divines of name ; and 
next, that his former amiable feeling of taking every 
one for what he was, was a dangerous one, leading 
with little difficulty to a sufferance of every sort of 
belief, and legitimately terminating in the sentiment 
expressed in Pope's Universal Prayer, which his 
father had always held up to him as a pattern spe- 
cimen of shallow philosophism : 

" Father of all, in every age, 
In every clime adored, 
By saint, by savage, and by sage, 
Jehovah, Jove, or Lord." 


Charles went up this term for his first examination, 
and this caused him to remain in Oxford some days 
after the undergraduate part of his college had left 
for the Long Vacation. Thus he came across Mr. 
Vincent, one of the junior tutors, who was kind 
enough to ask him to dine in Common-room on 
Sunday, and on several mornings made him take 
some turns with him up and down the Fellows' 
walk in the college -garden. 

A few years make a great difference in the stand- 
ing of men at Oxford, and this made Mr. Vincent 



what is called a don in the eyes of persons who 
were very little younger than himself. Besides, 
Vincent looked much older than he really was ; he 
was of a full habit, with a florid complexion and 
large blue eyes, and shewed a deal of linen at his 
bosom, and full wristbands at his cuffs. Though a 
clever man, and a hard reader and worker, and a 
capital tutor, he was a good feeder as well ; he ate 
and drank, he walked and rode, with as much heart as 
he lectured in Aristotle, or crammed in Greek plays. 
What is stranger still, with all this he was something 
of a valetudinarian. He had come off from school 
on a foundation fellowship, and had the reputation 
both at school and in the University of being a 
first-rate scholar. He was a strict disciplinarian in 
his way, had the undergraduates under his thumb, 
and, having some bonhomie in his composition, was 
regarded by them with mingled feelings of fear and 
good will. They laughed at him, but carefully 
obeyed him. Besides this, he preached good ser- 
mons, read prayers with unction, and in his conver- 
sation sometimes had even a touch of evangelical 
spirituality. The young men even declared they 
could tell how much port he had taken in Com- 
mon-room by the devoutness of his responses in 
evening-chapel ; and it was on record that once, 
during the Confession, he had, in the heat of his con- 
trition, shoved over the huge velvet cushion in which 
his elbows were imbedded, upon the heads of the 
gentlemen commoners who sat under him. 

He had just so much originality of mind as gave 
him an excuse for being "his own party" in religion, 


or what he himself called being "no party man ;" 
and just so little that he was ever mistaking shams 
for truths, and converting pompous nothings into 
oracles. He was oracular in his manner, denounced 
parties and party- spirit, and thought to avoid the 
one and the other, by eschewing all persons, and 
holding all opinions. He had a great idea of the 
via media being the truth ; and to obtain it, thought 
it enough to flee from extremes, without having any 
very definite mean to flee to. He had not clear- 
ness of intellect enough to pursue a truth to its 
limits, nor boldness enough to hold it in its simplicity ; 
but he was always saying things and unsaying them, 
balancing his thoughts in impossible positions, and 
guarding his words by unintelligible limitations. 
As to the men and opinions of the day and place, he 
would in the main have agreed with them, had he 
let himself alone ; but he was determined to have 
an intellect of his own, and this put him to great 
shifts when he would distinguish himself from them. 
Had he been older than they, he would have talked 
of "young heads," "hot heads," and the like ; but 
since they were grave and cool men, and outran him 
by fourteen or fifteen years, he found nothing better 
than to shake his head, mutter against party-spirit, 
refuse to read their books, lest he should be obliged 
to agree with them, and make a boast of avoiding 
their society. At the present moment he was on the 
point of starting for a continental tour to recruit 
himself after the labours of an Oxford year ; mean- 
while he was keeping hall and chapel open for such 
men as were waiting either for Responsions, or for 


their battel-money ; and he took notice of Reding 
as a clever modest youth, of whom something might 
be made. Under this view of him, he had, among 
other civilities, asked him to breakfast a day or two 
before he went down. 

A tutor's breakfast is always a difficult affair 
both for host and guests ; and Vincent piqued him- 
self on the tact with which he managed it. The ma- 
terial part was easy enough ; there were rolls, toast, 
muffins, eggs, cold lamb, strawberries, on the table ; 
and in due season the college-servant brought in 
mutton cutlets and broiled ham ; and every one ate 
to his heart's, or rather his appetite's, content. It 
was a more arduous undertaking to provide the 
running accompaniment of thought, or at least of 
words, without which the breakfast would have been 
little better than a pig-trough. The conversation 
or rather mono-polylogue, as some great performer 
calls it, ran in somewhat of the following strain : — 

" Mr. Bruton, what news from Staffordshire ? 
Are the potteries pretty quiet now ? Our potteries 
grow in importance. You need not look at the 
cup and saucer before you, Mr. Catley ; these come 
from Derbyshire. But you find English crockery 
every where on the continent. I myself found half 
a willow-pattern saucer in the crater of Vesuvius. 
Mr. Sikes, I think you have been in Italy?" "No, 
sir," said Sikes ; " I was near going ; my family set 
off a fortnight ago, but I was kept here by these 
confounded smalls." " Your Responsiones," an- 
swered the tutor, in a tone of rebuke ; " an un- 
fortunate delay for you, for it is to be an unusually 


fine season, if the meteorologists of the sister Uni- 
versity are right in their predictions. Who is in the 
Responsion schools, Mr. Sikes V " Butson of Leices- 
ter is the strict one, sir ; he plucks one man in three. 
He plucked last week Patch of St. George's, and 
Patch has taken his oath he'll shoot him ; and But- 
son has walked about ever since with a bull-dog." 
" These are reports, Mr. Sikes, which often flit about, 
but must not be trusted. Mr. Patch could not have 
given a better proof that his rejection was deserved." 
A pause — during which poor Vincent hastily 
gobbled up two or three mouthfuls of bread and 
butter, the knives and forks meanwhile clinking 
upon his guests' plates. " Sir, is it true," began one 
of them at length, " that the old Principal is going 
to be married?" " These are matters, Mr. Atkins," 
answered Vincent, " which we should always inquire 
about at the fountain-head ; antiquam exquirite ma- 
trem, or rather patrem ; ha, ha ! Take some more 
tea, Mr. Reding ; it won't hurt your nerves. I am 
rather choice in my tea ; this comes overland 
through Russia ; the sea-air destroys the flavour 
of our common tea. Talking of air, Mr. Tenby, I 
think you are a chemist. Have you paid attention 
to the recent experiments on the composition and 
resolution of air ? Not ? I am surprised at it ; they 
are well worth your most serious consideration. It 
is now pretty well ascertained that inhaling gases is 
the cure for all kinds of diseases. People are be- 
ginning to talk of the gas-cure, as they did of the 
water-cure. The great foreign chemist, Professor 
Scaramouch, has the credit of the discovery. The 


effects are astounding, quite astounding ; and there 
are several remarkable coincidences. You know 
medicines are always unpleasant, and so these gases 
are always fetid. The Professor cures by stenches ; 
and has brought his science to such perfection that 
he actually can classify them. There are six ele- 
mentary stenches, and these spread into a variety of 
subdivisions. What do you say, Mr. Reding? Dis- 
tinctive ? Yes, there is something very distinctive 
in smells. But what is most gratifying of all, and 
is the great coincidence I spoke of, his ultimate re- 
solution of fetid gases assigns to them the very same 
precise number as is given to existing complaints in 
the latest treatises on pathology. Each complaint 
has its gas. And, what is still more singular, an 
exhausted receiver is a specific for certain desperate 
disorders. For instance, it has effected several cures 
of hydrophobia. Mr. Seaton," he continued to a 
freshman, who, his breakfast finished, was sitting 
uncomfortably on his chair, looking down, and play- 
ing with his knife — " Mr. Seaton, you are looking at 
that picture" — it was almost behind Seaton' s back — 
" I don't wonder at it ; it was given me by my good 
old mother, who died many years ago. It repre- 
sents some beautiful Italian scenery." 

Vincent stood up, and his party after him, and all 
crowded round the picture. " I prefer the green of 
England," said Reding. "England has not that bril- 
liant variety of colour," said Tenby. " But there is 
something so soothing in green." "You know, of 
course, Mr. Reding," said the tutor, " that there is 
plenty of green in Italy, and in winter even more 


than in England ; only there are other colours too." 
" But I can't help fancying," said Charles, " that that 
mixture of colours takes off the repose of English 
scenery." " The repose, for instance," said Tenby, 
" of Binsey Common or Port Meadow in winter." 
" Say in summer," said Reding ; " if you choose 
place, I will choose time. I think the University 
goes down just when Oxford begins to be most 
beautiful. The walks and meadows are so fragrant 
and bright now, the hay half carried, and the short 
new grass appearing." " Reding ought to live here 
all through the Long," said Tenby : " does any one 
live through the Vacation, sir, in Oxford?" "Do 
you mean they die before the end of it, Mr. Tenby?" 
asked Vincent. " It can't be denied," he continued, 
" that many, like Mr. Reding, think it a most plea- 
sant time. / am fond of Oxford ; but it is not my 
habitat out of term-time." " Well, I think I should 
like to make it so," said Charles ; " but, I suppose, 
undergraduates are not allowed." Mr. Vincent an- 
swered with more than necessary gravity, "No;" it 
rested with the Principal ; but he conceived that he 
would not consent to it. Vincent added that cer- 
tainly there were parties who remained in Oxford 
through the Long Vacation. It was said mysteriously. 
Charles answered that, if it was against college-rules, 
there was no help for it; else, were he reading for 
his degree, he should like nothing better than to 
pass the Long Vacation in Oxford, if he might judge 
by the pleasantness of the last ten days. " That 
is a compliment, Mr. Reding, to your company," 
says Vincent. 


At this moment the door opened, and in came 
the manciple with the dinner-paper, which Mr. Vin- 
cent had formally to run his eye over. " Watkins," 
he said, giving it back to him, " I almost think to- 
day is one of the Fasts of the Church. Go and look' 
Watkins, and bring me word." The astonished man- 
ciple, who had never been sent on such a commis- 
sion in his whole career before, hastened out of the 
room, to task his wits how best to fulfil it. The 
question seemed to strike the company as forcibly, 
for there was a sudden silence, which was succeeded 
by a shuffling of feet and a leave-taking ; as if, 
though they had secured their ham and mutton at 
breakfast, they did not like to risk their dinner. 
Watkins returned sooner than could have been ex- 
pected. He said that Mr. Vincent was right; to- 
day he had found was "the feast of the Apostles." 
" The Vigil of St. Peter, you mean, Watkins," said 
Mr. Vincent ; " I thought so. Then let us have a 
plain beefsteak and saddle of mutton ; no Portugal 
onions, Watkins, or currant jelly ; and some simple 
pudding, Charlotte pudding, Watkins — that will do." 
Watkins vanished. By this time, Charles found 
himself alone with the college authority ; who began 
to speak to him in a more confidential tone. " Mr. 
Reding," said he, " I did not like to question you 
before the others, but I conceive you had no parti- 
cular meaning in your praise of Oxford in the Long 
Vacation? In the mouths of some it would have 
been suspicious." Charles was all surprise. '* To 
tell the truth, Mr. Reding, as things stand," he 
proceeded, "it is often a mark of party, this resi- 


dence in the Vacation ; though, of course, there is 
nothing in the thing itself but what is perfectly na- 
tural and right." Charles was all attention. " My 
good sir," the tutor proceeded, "avoid parties; be 
sure to avoid party. You are young in your career 
among us. I always feel anxious about young men 
of talent ; there is the greatest danger of the talent 
of the University being absorbed in party." Reding 
expressed a hope, that nothing he had done had 
given cause to his tutor's remark. " No," replied 
Mr. Vincent, " no ;" yet with some slight hesitation ; 
" no, I don't know that it has. But I have thought 
some of your remarks and questions at lecture were 
like a person pushing things too far, and wishing to 
form a system.' 1 '' Charles was so much taken aback 
by the charge, that the unexplained mystery of the 
Long Vacation went out of his head. He said, he 
was " very sorry," and " obliged ;" and tried to re- 
collect what he could have said to give ground to 
Mr. Vincent's remark. Not being able at the mo- 
ment to recollect, he went on. "I assure you, sir, 
I know so little of parties in the place, that I hardly 
know their leaders. I have heard persons men- 
tioned, but, if I tried, I think I should, in some cases, 
mismatch names and opinions." " I believe it," said 
Vincent ; " but you are young ; I am cautioning you 
against tendencies. You may suddenly find yourself 
absorbed before you know where you are." 

Charles thought this a good opportunity of ask- 
ing some questions in detad, about points which 
puzzled him. He asked whether Dr. Brownside 
was considered a safe divine to follow. " I hold, 


d'ye see," answered Vincent, " that all errors are 
counterfeits of truth. Clever men say true things, 
Mr. Reding, true in their substance, but," sinking 
his voice to a whisper, " tbey go too far. It might 
even be shewn that all sects are in one sense but 
parts of the Catholic Church. I don't say true parts, 
that is a further question ; but they embody great 
principles. The Quakers represent the principle of 
simplicity and evangelical poverty ; they even have 
a dress of their own, like monks. The Independents 
represent the rights of the laity ; the Wesleyans 
cherish the devotional principle ; the Irvingites, the 
symbolical and mystical ; the High Church party, 
the principle of obedience ; the Liberals are the guar- 
dians of reason. No party, then, I conceive, is en- 
tirely right or entirely wrong. As to Dr. Brown- 
side, there certainly have been various opinions enter- 
tained about his divinity ; still, he is an able man, and 
I think you will gain good, gain good from his teach- 
ing. But mind, I don't recommend him ; yet I re- 
spect him, and I consider that he says many things 
very well worth your attention. I would advise you, 
then, to accept the good which his sermons offer, 
without committing yourself to the bad. That, de- 
pend upon it, Mr. Reding, is the golden though the 
obvious rule in these matters." 

Charles said, in answer, that Mr. Vincent was over- 
rating his powers ; that he had to learn before he 
could judge ; and that he wished very much to know 
whether Vincent could recommend him any book, in 
which he might see at once what the true Church-of- 
England doctrine was on a number of points which 


perplexed him. Mr. Vincent replied, that he must 
be on his guard against dissipating his mind with 
such reading, at a time when his University duties 
had a definite claim upon him. He ought to avoid 
all controversies of the day, all authors of the day. 
He would advise him to read no living authors. 
" Read dead authors alone," he continued; "dead 
authors are safe. Our great divines," and he stood 
upright, " were models ; ' there were giants on the 
earth in those days,' as King George the Third had 
once said of them to Dr. Johnson. They had that 
depth, and power, and gravity, and fulness, and eru- 
dition ; and they were so racy, always racy, and 
what might be called English. They had that rich- 
ness too, such a mine of thought, such a world of 
opinion, such activity of mind, such inexhaustible 
resource, such diversity too. Then they were so 
eloquent ; the majestic Hooker, the imaginative Tay- 
lor, the brilliant Hall, the learning of Barrow, the 
strong sense of South, the keen logic of Chilling- 
worth, good, honest old Burnet," &c. &c. 

There did not seem much reason why he should 
stop at one moment more than another ; at length, 
however, he did stop. It was prose, but it was 
pleasant prose to Charles ; he knew just enough 
about these writers to feel interested in hearing them 
talked about, and to him Vincent seemed to be 
saying a good deal, when in fact he was saying very 
little. When he stopped, Charles said he believed 
that there were persons in the University who were 
promoting the study of these authors. Mr. Vincent 
looked grave. " It is true," he said ; " but, my 


young friend, I have already hinted to you that 
indifferent things are perverted to the purposes of 
party. At this moment the names of some of our 
greatest divines are little better than a watchword, 
by which the opinions of living individuals are sig- 
nified." " Which opinions, I suppose," he answered, 
" are not to be found in those authors." " I'll not 
say that," said Mr. Vincent. " I have the greatest 
respect for the individuals in question, and I am not 
denying that they have done good to our Church 
by drawing attention in this lax day to the old 
Church-of-England divinity. But it is one thing to 
agree with these gentlemen ; another," laying his 
hand on Charles's shoulder, " another to belong to 
their party. Do not make man your master ; get 
good from all ; tolerate all opinions ; think well of 
all persons, and you will be a wise man." 

Reding inquired, with some timidity, if this was 
not something like what Dr. Brownside had said in 
the University pulpit ; but perhaps the latter advo- 
cated a toleration of opinions in a different sense ? 
Mr. Vincent answered rather shortly, that he had 
not heard Dr. Brownside' s sermon ; but, for himself, 
he had been speaking only of persons in our own 
communion. " Our Church," he said, " admitted of 
great liberty of thought within her pale. Even our 
greatest divines differed from each other in many 
respects ; nay, Bishop Taylor differed from himself. 
It was a great principle in the English Church. 
Her true children agree to differ. In truth," he 
continued, " there is that robust, masculine, noble 
independence in the English mind, which refuses to 


be tied down to artificial shapes ; but is like, I 
will say, some great and beautiful production of 
nature, — a tree, which is rich in foliage and fantastic 
in limb, no sickly denizen of the hothouse, or help- 
less dependent of the garden-wall, but in careless 
magnificence sheds its fruits upon the free earth, for 
the bird of the air and the beast of the field, and all 
sorts of cattle, to eat thereof and rejoice." 

When Charles came away, he tried to think what 
he had gained by his conversation with Mr. Vin- 
cent ; not exactly what he had wanted, some prac- 
tical rules to guide his mind and keep him steady, 
but still some useful hints. He had already been 
averse to parties, and offended at what he saw of 
individuals attached to them. Vincent had confirmed 
him in his resolution to keep aloof from them, and 
to attend to his duties in the place. He felt pleased 
to have had this talk with him ; but what could he 
mean by suspecting a tendency in himself to push 
things too far, and thereby to implicate himself in 
party ? He was obliged to resign himself to ignor- 
ance on the subject, and to content himself with 
keeping a watch over himself in future. 


No opportunity has occurred of informing the reader 
that, during the last week or two, Charles had acci- 
dentally been a good deal thrown across Willis, the 
umbra of White at Bateman's breakfast-party. He 


had liked his looks on that occasion, when he was 
dumb ; he did not like him so much when he heard 
him talk ; still he could not help being interested 
in him, and not the least for this reason, that Willis 
seemed to have taken a great fancy to himself. He 
certainly did court Charles, and seemed anxious to 
stand well with him. Charles, however, did not 
like his mode of talking better than he did White's ; 
and when he first saw his rooms, there was much in 
them which shocked both his good sense and his 
religious principles. A large ivory crucifix, in a 
glass case, was a conspicuous ornament between the 
windows ; an engraving, representing the Blessed 
Trinity, as is usual in Catholic countries, hung over 
the fire-place ; and a picture of the Madonna and St. 
Dominic was opposite to it. On the mantel-piece 
were a rosary, a thuribulum, and other tokens of 
Catholicism, of which Charles did not know the 
uses ; a missal, ritual, and some Catholic tracts, 
lay on the table ; and, as he happened to come on 
Willis unexpectedly, he found him sitting in a vest- 
ment more like a cassock than a reading-gown, and 
engaged upon some portion of the Breviary. Virgil 
and Sophocles, Herodotus and Cicero, seemed, as 
impure pagans, to have hid themselves in corners, 
or flitted away, before the awful presence of the 
Ancient Church. Charles had taken upon himself 
to protest against some of these singularities, but 
without success. 

On the evening before his departure for the 
country, he had occasion to go towards Folly Bridge 
to pay a bill, when he was startled, as he passed 


what he had ever taken for a dissenting chapel, to 
see Willis come out of it. He hardly could believe 
he saw correctly : he knew, indeed, that Willis had 
been detained in Oxford, as he had been himself; 
but what had compelled him to a visit so extraor- 
dinary as that which he had just made, Charles had 
no means of determining. "Willis," he cried, as he 
stopped. Willis coloured, and tried to look easy. 
" Do come a few paces with me," said Charles. 
" What in the world has taken you there ? Is it not 
a dissenting meeting ?" " Dissenting meeting !" cried 
Willis, surprised and offended in his turn ; " what 
on earth could make you think I would go to a dis- 
senting meeting ?" " Well, I beg your pardon," 
said Charles ; " I recollect now ; it's the exhibition- 
room. However, once it was a chapel : that's my 
mistake. Isn't it what is called the ' Old Methodist 
Chapel V I never was there ; they shewed there 
the Dio-astro-doxon, so I think they called it." 
Charles talked on, to cover his own mistake, for he 
was ashamed of the charge he had made. Willis 
did not know whether he was in jest or earnest. 
" Reding," he said, " don't go on; you offend me." 
" Well, what is it ?" said Charles. " You know 
well enough," answered Willis, "though you wish to 
annoy me." " I don't indeed." " It's the Catholic 
church," said Willis. Reding was silent a moment ; 
then he said : " Well, I don't think you have mended 
the matter ; it is a dissenting meeting, call it what 
you will ; though not the kind of one I meant." 
" What can you mean ?" asked Willis. " Rather, 
what mean you by going to such places?" retorted 


Charles ; " why, it is against your oath." " My 
oath ! what oath ?" " There's not an oath now ; but 
there was an oath till lately," said Reding ; " and 
we still make a very solemn engagement. Don't 
you recollect your matriculation at the Vice-Chan- 
cellor's, and what oaths and declarations you made ?" 
" I don't know what I made : my tutor told me 
nothing about it. I signed a book or two." " You 
did more," said Reding. " / was told most carefully. 
You solemnly engaged to keep the statutes ; and 
one statute is, not to go into any dissenting chapel 
or meeting whatever." " Catholics are not Dis- 
senters," said Willis. " Oh, don't speak so," said 
Charles ; " you know it's meant to include them. 
The statute wishes us to keep from all places of 
worship whatever but our own." " But it is an ille- 
gal declaration or vow," said Willis, '* and so not 
binding." "Where did you find that get-off?" 
said Charles ; " the priest put that into your head." 
" I don't know the priest ; I never spoke a word to 
him," answered Willis. " Well, any how, it's not 
your own answer," said Reding ; "and does not help 
you. I am no casuist; but if it is an illegal en- 
gagement, you should not continue to enjoy the 
benefit of it." " W r hat benefit V " Your cap and 
gown ; a university education ; the chance of a 
scholarship, or fellowship. Give up these, and then 
plead, if you will, and lawfidly, that you are quit of 
your engagement ; but don't sail under false colours : 
don't take the benefit, and break the stipulation." 
" You take it too seriously ; there are half a hun- 
dred statutes you don't keep, any more than I. You 


are most inconsistent." " Well, if we don't keep 
them," said Charles, '* I suppose it is in points 
where the authorities don't enforce them ; for in- 
stance, they don't mean us to dress in brown, 
though the statutes order it." " But they do mean 
to keep you from walking down the High Street in 
beaver," answered Willis ; "for the Proctors march 
up and down, and send you back, if they catch 
you." " But this is a different matter," said Reding, 
changing his ground; " this is a matter of religion. 
It can't be right to go to strange places of wor- 
ship or meetings." " Why," said Willis, " if we 
are one Church with the Roman Catholics, I can't 
make out, for the life of me, how it's wrong for us 
to go to them, or them to us." " I'm no divine, 
I don't understand what is meant by one Church," 
said Charles ; " but I know well that there's not a 
Bishop, not a clergyman, not a sober Churchman 
in the land but would give it against you. It's a 
sheer absurdity." " Don't talk in that way," an- 
swered Willis, " please don't. I feel all my heart 
drawn to the Catholic worship ; our own service is 
so cold." " That's just what every stiff dissenter 
says," answered Charles ; " every poor cottager too, 
who knows no better, and goes after the Methodists, 
after dear Mr. Spoutaway or the preaching cobbler, 
she says (I have heard them), ' Oh, sir, I suppose 
we ought to go where we get most good. Mr. So- 
and-so goes to my heart — he goes through me.' " 
Willis laughed ; " Well, not a bad reason, as times 
go, / think," said he : " poor souls, what better 
means of judging have they? how can you hope they 



will like ' the Scripture moveth us' ? Really you are 
making too much of it. This is only. the second 
time I have been there, and, I tell you in earnest, I 
find my mind filled with awe and devotion there ; as 
I think you would too. I really am better for it : I 
cannot pray in church ; there's a bad smell there, 
and the pews hide every thing ; I can't see through 
a deal board. But here, when I went in, I found all 
still and calm, the space open, and, in the twiligbt, 
the Tabernacle, just visible, pointed out by the 
lamp." Charles looked very uncomfortable. "Really, 
Willis," he said, " I don't know what to say to you. 
Heaven forbid that I should speak against the Ro- 
man Catholics ; I know nothing about them. But 
this I know, that you are not a Roman Catholic, and 
have no business there. If they have such sacred 
things among them as you allude to, still these are 
not yours; you are an intruder. I know nothing 
about it ; I don't like to give a judgment, I am sure. 
But it's a tampering with sacred things ; running 
here and there, touching and tasting, taking up, put- 
ting down. I don't like it," he added with vehe- 
mence ; "it's taking liberties with God." " Oh, my 
dear Reding, please don't speak so very severely," 
said poor "Willis ; " now what have I done more than 
you would do yourself, were you in France or Italy ? 
Do you mean to say you wouldn't enter the churches 
abroad ?" "I will only decide about what is before 
me," answered Reding ; " when I go abroad, then 
will be the time to think about your question. It is 
quite enough to know what we ought to do at the 
moment, and I am clear you have been doing wrong. 


How did you find your way there V " White took 
me." " Then there is one man in the world more 
thoughtless than you : do many of the gownsmen go 
there?" "Not that I know of; one or two have 
gone from curiosity ; there is no practice of going, 
at least this is what I am told." "Well," said 
Charles, "you must promise me you will not go 
again. Come, we won't part till you do." " That 
is too much," said Willis gently ; then, disengaging 
his arm from Reding' s, he suddenly darted away 
from him, saying, " Good-bye, good-bye ; to our 
next merry meeting — au revoir." 

There was no help for it. Charles walked slowly 
home, saying to himself : " What if, after all, the Ro- 
man Catholic Church is the true Church ? I wish I 
knew what to believe ; no one will tell me what to 
believe ; I am so left to myself." Then he thought : 
" I suppose I know quite enough for practice — more 
than I do practise ; and I ought surely to be contented 
and thankful." 


Charles was an affectionate son, and the Long Va- 
cation passed very happily at home. He was up 
early, and read steadily till luncheon, and then he 
was at the service of his father, mother, and sisters 
for the rest of the day. He loved the calm, quiet 
country ; he loved the monotonous flow of time, 
when each day is like the other ; and, after the ex- 


citement of Oxford, the secluded parsonage was like 
a haven beyond the tossing of the waves. The whirl 
of opinions and perplexities which had encircled him 
at Oxford, now were like the distant sound of the 
ocean — they reminded him of his present security. 
The undulating meadows, the green lanes, the open 
heath, the common with its wide-spreading dusky 
elms, the high timber which fringed the level path from 
village to village, ever and anon broken and thrown 
into groups, or losing itself in copses — even the gate, 
and the stile, and the turnpike-road had the charm, 
not of novelty, but of long familiar use ; they had the 
poetry of many recollections. Nor was the dilapi- 
dated deformed church, with its outside staircases, 
its unsightly galleries, its wide intruded windows, 
its uncouth pews, its low nunting table, its forlorn 
vestry, and its damp earthy smell, without its plea- 
sant associations to the inner man ; for there it was 
that, for many a year, Sunday after Sunday, he had 
heard his dear father read and preach ; there were 
the old monuments, with Latin inscriptions and 
strange devices, the black boards with white letters, 
the Resurgams and grinning skulls, the fire-buckets, 
the faded militia-colours, and, almost as much a fix- 
ture, the old clerk, with a Welsh wig over his ears, 
shouting the responses out of place,— which had ar- 
rested his imagination, and awed him when a child. 
And then, there was his home itself; its well-known 
rooms, its pleasant routine, its order, and its comfort, 
— an old and true friend, the dearer to him because 
he had made new ones. "Where I shall be in time 
to come, I know not," he said to himself ; "I am but 


a boy ; many things which I have not a dream of, 
which my imagination cannot compass, may come on 
me before I die — if I live; but here at least, and 
now, I am happy, and I will enjoy my happiness. 
Some say that school is the pleasantest time of one's 
life ; this does not exclude college. I suppose care 
is what makes life so wearing. At present I have no 
care, no responsibility ; I suppose I shall feel a little 
when I go up for my degree. Care is a terrible thing ; 
I have had a httle of it at times at school. What 
a strange thing to fancy, I shall be one day twenty- 
five or thirty! How the weeks are flying by ! — the 
Vacation will soon be over ! Oh, I am so happy, it 
quite makes me afraid. Yet I shall have strength 
for my day." 

Sometimes, however, his thoughts took a sadder 
turn, and he anticipated the future more vividly 
than he enjoyed the present. Mr. Malcolm had 
come to see them, after an absence from the par- 
sonage for some years ; his visit was a great plea- 
sure to Mr. Reding, and not much less to himself, 
to whom a green home and a family-circle were 
agreeable sights, after his bachelor-life at college. 
He had been a great favourite with Charles and 
his sisters as children, though now his popula- 
rity with them for the most part rested on the me- 
mory of the past. When he told them amusing 
stories, or allowed them to climb his knee and take 
off his spectacles, he did all that was necessary to 
gain their childish hearts ; more is necessary to 
conciliate the affection of young men and women ; 
and thus it is not surprising that he lived in their 


minds principally by prescription. He neither knew 
this, nor would have thought much about it, if he 
had ; for, like many persons of advancing years, he 
made himself very much his own centre, did not 
care to enter into the minds of others, did not con- 
sult for them, or find his happiness in them. He 
was kind and friendly to the young people, as he 
would be kind to a canary-bird or a lap-dog ; it was 
a sort of external love ; and, though they got on 
capitally with him, they did not miss him when gone, 
nor would have been much troubled to know that he 
was never to come again. Charles drove him about 
the country, stamped his letters, secured him his 
newspapers from the neighbouring town, and listened 
to his stories about Oxford and Oxford men. He 
really liked him, and wished to please him ; but, as 
to consulting him in any serious matter, or going to 
him for comfort in affliction, he would as soon have 
thought of betaking him to Dan the pedlar, or old 
Isaac who played the Sunday bassoon. 

"How have your peaches been this year, Mal- 
colm?" said Mr. Reding one day after dinner to 
his guest. " You ought to know that we have no 
peaches in Oxford," answered Mr. Malcolm. " My 
memory plays me false, then ; I had a vision of, at 
least, October peaches, on one occasion, and fine 
ones too." " Ah, you mean at old Tom Spindle's, 
the jockey's," answered Mr. Malcolm; "it's true 
he had a bit of brick wall, and was proud of it. 
But peaches come, when there is no one in Oxford 
to eat them ; so either the tree, or at least the fruit, 
is a great rarity there. Oxford wasn't so empty 


once ; you have old mulberry-trees there, in record 
of better days." " At that time too," said Charles. 
" I suppose, the more expensive fruits were not 
cultivated. Mulberries are the witness, not only of 
a full college, but of simple tastes." " Charles is 
secretly cutting at our hothouse here," said Mr. 
Reding ; " as if our first father did not prefer fruits 
and flowers to beef and mutton." " No, indeed," 
said Charles, " I think peaches capital things ; and 
as to flowers, I am too fond even of scents." 
"Charles has some theory, then, about scents I'll 
be bound," said his father ; " I never knew a boy 
who so placed his likings and dislikings on fancies. 
He began to eat olives directly he read the CEdipus 
of Sophocles; and, I verily believe, will soon give 
up oranges from his dislike to King William." 
"Every one does so," said Charles: "who would 
not be in the fashion ? There's aunt Kitty, she calls 
a bonnet c a sweet' one year, which makes her 'a 
perfect fright' the next." " You're right, papa, in 
this instance," said his mother ; " I know he has 
some good reason, though I never can recollect it, 
why he smells a rose, or distils lavender. What is 
it, my dear Mary ?" " ' Relics ye are of Eden's 
bowers,' " said she. " Why, sir, that was precisely 
your own reason just now," said Charles to his 
father. " There's more than that," said Mrs. Red- 
ing, "if I knew what it was." " He thinks the scent 
more intellectual than the other senses," said Mary, 
smiling. "Such a boy for paradoxes!" said his 
mother. "Well, so it is in a certain way," said 
Charles ; "but I can't explain. Sounds and scents 


are more ethereal, less material ; they have no shape, 
like the angels." Mr. Malcolm laughed. "Well, I 
grant it, Charles," he said ; " they are length with- 
out breadth." "Did you ever hear the like?" said 
Mrs. Reding, laughing too ; " don't encourage him, 
Mr. Malcolm ; you are worse than he. Angels 
length without breadth !" " They pass from place to 
place, they come, they go," continued Mr. Malcolm. 
"They conjure up the past so vividly," said Charles. 
" But sounds surely more than scents," said 
Mr. Malcolm. " Pardon me ; the reverse, as / 
think," answered Charles. "That is a paradox, 
Charles," said Mr. Malcolm; "the smell of roast 
beef never went further than to remind a man of 
dinner ; but sounds are pathetic and inspiring." 
" Well, sir, but think of this," said Charles ; " scents 
are both complete in themselves, yet do not consist of 
parts. Think how very distinct the smell of a rose 
is from a pink, a pink from a sweet-pea, a sweet- 
pea from a stock, a stock from lilac, lilac from 
lavender, lavender from jasmine, jasmine from 
honeysuckle, honeysuckle from hawthorn, hawthorn 
from hyacinth, hyacinth — " "Spare us," inter- 
rupted Mr. Malcolm ; " are you going through the 
index of Loudon ?" " And these are only the scents 
of flowers ; how different flowers smell from fruits, 
fruits from spices, spices from roast-beef or pork- 
cutlets, and so on. Now, what I was coming to is 
this — these scents are perfectly distinct from each 
other, and sui generis ; they never can be confused ; 
yet each is communicated to the apprehension in an 
instant. Sights take up a great space, a tune is a 


succession of sounds ; but scents are at once specific 
and complete, yet indivisible. Who can halve a 
scent ? they need neither time nor space ; thus they 
are immaterial or spiritual." " Charles hasn't been 
to Oxford for nothing," said his mother, laughing 
and looking at Mary - r " this is what I call chopping 
logic !" 

" Well done, Charles !" cried Mr. Malcolm ; 
" and now, since you have such clear notions of 
the power of smells, you ought, like the man in 
the story, to be satisfied with smelling at your din- 
ner, and grow fat upon it. It's a shame you sit 
down to table." "Well, sir," answered Charles, 
" some people do seem to thrive on snuff at least." 
" For shame, Charles !" said Mr. Malcolm ; " you 
have seen me use the common-room snuff-box to 
keep myself awake after dinner; but nothing more. 
I keep a box in my pocket merely as a bauble : it 
was a present. You should have lived when I was 
young. There was old Dr. Troughton of Nun's Hall, 
he carried his snuff loose in his pocket ; and old 
Mrs. Vice-Principal Daffy used to lay a train along 
her arm, and fire it with her nose. Doctors of medi- 
cine took it as a preservative against infection, and 
doctors of divinity against drowsiness in church." 
" They take wine against infection now," said Mr. 
Reding ; " it's a much surer protective." " Wine ?" 
cried Mr. Malcolm, " oh, they didn't take less wine 
then, as you and I know. On certain solemn occa- 
sions they made a point of getting drunk, the whole 
college, from the Vice-Principal or Sub-Warden down 
to the scouts. Heads of houses were kept in order 


by their wives ; but I assure you the jolly god came 
very near Mr. Vice-Chancellor himself. There was 
old Dr. Sturdy of St. Michael's, a great martinet in 
his time. One day the King passed through Oxford ; 
Sturdy, a tall, upright, iron-faced man, had to meet 
him in procession at Magdalen Bridge, and walked 
down with his pokers before him, gold and silver, 
vergers, cocked hats, and the rest. There wasn't one 
of them that wasn't in liquor. Think of the good 
old man's horror, Majesty in the distance, and his 
own people swaying to and fro under his very nose, 
and promising to leave him for the gutter before the 
march was ended." " No one can get tipsy with 
snuff, I grant," said Mr. Reding ; " but if wine has 
done some men harm, it has done others a deal 
of good." " Hair-powder is as bad as snuff," said 
Mary, preferring the former subject ; " there's old 
Mr. Butler of Cooling ; his wig is so large and full 
of powder, that when he nods his head, I am sure 
to sneeze." 

" Ah, but all these are accidents, young lady," 
said Mr. Malcolm, put out by this block to the 
conversation, and running off somewhat testily in 
another direction; "accidents after all. Old people 
are always the same ; so are young. Each age 
has its own fashion : if Mr. Butler wore no wig, 
still there would be something about him odd and 
strange to young eyes. Charles, don't you be an 
old bachelor. No one cares for old people. Marry, 
my dear boy ; look out betimes for a virtuous 
young woman, who will make you an attentive 
wife." Charles slightly coloured, and his sister 



laughed, as if there was some understanding between 
them. Mr. Malcolm continued ; " Don't wait till 
you want some one to buy flannel for your rheuma- 
tism or gout ; marry betimes." " You will let me 
take my degree first, sir ?" said Charles. " Cer- 
tainly, your M.A.'s, if you will ; but don't become 
an old Fellow. Don't wait till forty ; people make 
the strangest mistakes." " Dear Charles will make 
a kind and affectionate husband, I am sure," said his 
mother, " when the time comes ; — and come it will, 
though not just yet. Yes, my dear boy," she added, 
nodding at him, " you will not be able to escape 
your destiny, when it comes." " Charles, you must 
know," said Mr. Reding to his guest, " is romantic 
in his notions just now. I believe it is, that he thinks 
no one good enough for him. Oh, my dear Charlie, 
don't let me pain you, I meant nothing serious ; but 
somehow he has not hit it off very well with some 
young ladies here, who expected more attention than 
he cared to give." " I am sure," said Mary, "Charles 
is most attentive whenever there is occasion, and al- 
ways has his eyes about him to do a service ; only 
he's a bad hand at small talk." " All will come in 
time, my dear," said his mother ; " a good son makes 
a good husband." " And a very loving papa," said 
Mr. Malcolm. " Oh, spare me, sir," said poor 
Charles ; " how have I deserved this ?" " Well," 
proceeded Mr. Malcolm, " and young ladies ought 
to marry betimes too." " Come, Mary, your turn 
is coming," cried Charles ; and taking his sister's 
hand, he threw up the sash, and escaped with her 
into the garden. 


They crossed the lawn, and took refuge in a 
shrubbery. " How strange it is !" said Mary, as 
they strolled along the winding walk ; " we used to 
like Mr. Malcolm so, as children -, but now, I like 
him still, but he is not the same." " We are older," 
said her brother ; " different things take us now." 
" He used to be so kind," continued she ; " when he 
was coming, the day was looked out for ; and mamma 
said, • Take care you be good when Mr. Malcolm 
comes.' And he was sure to bring a twelfth-cake, 
or a Noah's ark, or something of the sort. And then 
he romped with us, and let us make fun of him." 
" Indeed it isn't he that is changed," said Charles, 
" but we ; we are in the time of life to change ; 
we have changed already, and shall change still." 
" What a mercy it is," said his sister, " that we are 
so happy among ourselves as a family ! If we change, 
we shall change together, as apples of one stock ; if 
one fails, the other does. Thus we are always the 
same to each other." " It is a mercy indeed," said 
Charles ; " we are so blessed, that I am sometimes 
quite frightened." His sister looked earnestly at him. 
He laughed a little, to turn off the edge of his serious- 
ness. " You would know what I mean, dear Mary, 
if you had read Herodotus. A Greek tyrant feared 
his own excessive prosperity, and therefore made a 
sacrifice to fortune. I mean, he gave up something 
which he held most precious ; he took a ring from 
his finger, and cast it into the sea, lest the Deity 
should afflict him, if he did not afflict himself." 
" My dear Charles, if we do but enjoy God's gifts 
thankfully, and take care not to set our hearts on 


them or to abuse them, we need not fear for their 
continuance." " Well," said Charles, " there's one 
text which has ever dwelt on my mind, ' Rejoice 
with trembling.' I can't take full, unrestrained plea- 
sure in any thing." " Why not, if you look at it 
as God's gift?" asked Mary. " I don't defend it," 
he replied ; " it's my way ; it may be a selfish pru- 
dence, for what I know ; but I am sure, that, did 
I give my heart to any creature, I should be with- 
drawing it from God. How easily could I idolise 
these sweet walks, which we have known for so 
many years !" 

They walked on in silence. " Well," said Mary, 
" whatever we lose, no change can affect us as a 
family. While we are we, we are to each other 
what nothing external can be to us, whether as given, 
or as taken away." Charles made no answer. 
" What has come to you, dear Charles ?" she said, 
stopping and looking at him ; then, gently remov- 
ing his hair and smoothing his forehead, she said, 
" You are so sad to-day." " Dearest Mary," he 
made answer, " nothing's the matter, indeed. 1 
think it is Mr. Malcolm who has put me out. It's 
so stupid to talk of the prospects of a boy like me. 
Don't look so, I mean nothing ; only it annoys 
me." Mary smiled. " What I mean is," continued 
Charles, " that we can rely on nothing here, and are 
fools if we build on the future." " We can rely on 
each other," she repeated. " Ah, dear Mary, don't 
say so ; it frightens me." She looked round at him 
surprised, and almost frightened herself. " Dearest," 
he continued, " I mean nothing ; only every thing is 


so uncertain here below." " We are sure of each 
other, Charles." " Yes, Mary," and he kissed her 
affectionately, " it is true, most true ;" then he 
added, "all I meant was, that it seems presump- 
tuous to say so. David and Jonathan were parted ; 
St. Paul and St. Barnabas." Tears stood in Mary's 
eyes. " Oh, what an ass I am," he said, " for thus 
teasing you about nothing; no, I only mean that 
there is One only who cannot die, who never changes, 
only one. It can't be wrong to remember this. Do 
you recollect Cowper's beautiful lines? I know 
them without having learned them — they struck me 
so much the first time I read them:" — and he re- 
peated them : 

Thou art the source and centre of all minds, 
Their only point of rest, Eternal Word. 
From Thee departing, they are lost, and rove 
At random, without honour, hope, or peace. 
From Thee is all that soothes the life of man, 
His high endeavour, and his glad success, 
His strength to suffer, and his will to serve. 
But oh, Thou Sovereign Giver of all good, 
Thou art of all Thy gifts Thyself the crown ; 
Give what Thou canst, without Thee we are poor, 
And with Thee rich, take what Thou wilt away. 


October came at length, and with it Charles's 
thoughts were turned again to Oxford. One or two 
weeks passed by ; then a few days ; and it was time 


to be packing. His father parted with him with 
even greater emotion than when he first went to 
school. He would himself drive him in the phaeton 
to the neighbouring town, from which the omnibus 
ran to the railroad, though he had the gout flying 
about him ; and when the moment for parting came, 
he could not get himself to give up his hand, as if 
he had something to say which he could not recollect 
or master. "Well, Christmas will soon come," he 
said ; " we must part, it's no use delaying it. Write 
to us soon, dear boy ; and tell us all about yourself 
and your matters. Tell us about your friends ; they 
are nice young men apparently : but I have great 
confidence in your prudence ; you have more pru- 
dence than some of them. Your tutor seems a 
valuable man, from what you tell me," he went on, — 
repeating what had passed between him and Charles 
many times before ; "a sound, well -judging man, 
that Mr. Vincent. Sheffield is too clever ; he is 
young: you have an older head. It's no good my 
going on ; I have said all this before ; and you 
may be late for the rail. Well, God bless you, my 
dearest Charlie, and make you a blessing. May you 
be happier and better than your father! I have 
ever been blest all my life long — wonderfully blest. 
Blessings have been poured on me from my youth, 
far above my deserts ; may they be doubled upon 
you ! Good-bye, my beloved Charles, good-bye !" 

Charles had to pass a day or two at the house 
of a relative who lived a little way out of London. 
While he was there, a letter arrived for him, for- 
warded from home; it was from Willis, dated from 


London, and announced that he had come to a very 
important decision, and should not return to Oxford. 
Charles was fairly in the world again, plunged into 
the whirl of opinions ! how sad a contrast to his 
tranquil home ! There was no mistaking what the 
letter meant ; and he set out at once with the chance 
of finding the writer at the house from which he 
dated it. It was a lodging at the west- end of the 
town ; and he reached it about noon. 

He found Willis in company with a person ap- 
parently two or three years older. Willis started 
on seeing him. " Who would have thought! what 
brings you here?" he said ; " I thought you were in 
the country." Then to his companion, " This is 
the friend I was speaking to you about, Morley. 
A happy meeting ; sit down, dear Reding ; I have 
much to tell you." Charles sat down all suspense, 
looking at Willis with such keen anxiety, that the 
latter was forced to cut the matter short. " Reding, 
I am a Catholic." Charles threw himself back in 
his chair, and turned pale. " My dear Reding, 
what's the matter with you? why don't you speak 
to me ?" Charles was still silent ; at last, stooping 
forward, with his elbows on his knees, and his head 
on his hands, he said in a low voice, " Willis, 
what have you done!" "Done?" said Willis; 
" what you should do, and half Oxford besides. 
Reding, I'm so happy !'' " Alas, alas !" said Charles ; 
" but what is the good of my staying? — all good 
attend you, Willis ; good-bye." " No, my good 
Reding, you don't leave me so soon, having found 
me so unexpectedly ; and you have had a long 


walk, I dare say ; sit down, there's a good fellow ; 
we shall have luncheon soon, and you must not go 
without taking your part in it." He took Charles's 
hat from him, as he spoke ; and Charles, in a mix- 
ture of feelings, let him have his way. " Willis, 
so you have separated yourself from us for ever !" he 
said ; " you have taken your course, we keep ours : 
our paths are different." "Not so," said Willis; 
• you must follow me, and we shall be one still." 
Charles was half offended ; "Really I must go," he 
said, and he rose; "you must not talk in that 
manner." " Pray, forgive me," answered Willis ; 
" I won't do so again ; but I could not help it ; 
I am not in a common state, I'm so happy." 

A thought struck Reding. " Tell me, Willis," he 
said, " your exact position ; in what sense are you a 
Catholic 1 What is to prevent your returning with 
me to Oxford ?" His companion interposed : "lam 
taking a liberty, perhaps," he said ; " but Mr. Willis 
has been regularly received into the Catholic Church." 
" I have not introduced you," said Willis. " Reding, 
let me introduce Mr. Morley ; Morley, Mr. Reding. 
Yes, Reding, I owe it to him that I am a Catholic. I 
have been on a tour with him abroad. We met with 
a good priest in France, who consented to receive 
my abjuration." " Well, I think he might profitably 
have examined into your state of mind a little be- 
fore he did so," said Reding ; "you are not the per- 
son to become a Catholic, Willis." "What do you 
mean?" "Because," answered Reding, "you are 
more of a dissenter than a Catholic. I beg your 
pardon," he added, seeing Willis look up sharply, 



"let me be frank with you, pray do. You were 
attached to the Church of Rome, not as a child to a 
mother, but in a wayward roving way, as a matter 
of fancy or liking, or (excuse me) as a greedy boy 
to some object of taste ; and you pursued your ob- 
ject by disobeying the authorities set over you." 
It was as much as Willis could bear ; he said, he 
thought he recollected a text about " obeying God 
rather than men." " I see you have disobeyed men," 
retorted Charles ; "I trust you have been obeying 
God." Willis thought him rude, and would not 

Mr. Morley began : " If you knew the circum- 
stances better," he said, "you would doubtless judge 
differently. I consider Mr. Willis to be just the 
very person on whom it was incumbent to join the 
Church, and who will make an excellent Catholic. 
You must blame, not the venerable priest who re- 
ceived him, but me. The good man saw his devo- 
tion, his tears, his humility, his earnest desire ; but 
the state of his mind he learned through me, who 
speak French better than Mr. Willis. However, he 
had quite enough conversation with him in French 
and Latin. He could not reject a postulant for 
salvation ; it was impossible. Had you been he, 
you would have done the same." " Well, sir, per- 
haps I have been unjust to him and you," said 
Charles; "however, I cannot augur well of this." 
" You are judging, sir," answered Mr. Morley, " let 
me say it, of things you do not know. You do not 
know what the Catholic religion is ; you do not know 
what its grace is, or the gift of faith." The speaker 


was a layman ; he spoke with earnestness the more 
intense, because quiet. Charles felt himself reproved 
by his manner ; his good taste suggested to him that 
he had been too vehement in the presence of a 
stranger; yet he did not feel the less confidence 
in his cause. He paused before he answered ; then 
he said briefly, that he was aware that he did not 
know the Roman Catholic religion, but he knew 
Mr. "Willis. He could not help giving his opinion 
that good would not come of it. " / have ever 
been a Catholic," said Mr. Morley ; " so far I can- 
not judge of members of the Church of England ; but 
this I know, that the Catholic Church is the only 
true Church. I may be wrong in many things; I 
cannot be wrong in this. This too I know, that the 
Catholic faith is one, and that no other Church has 
faith. The Church of England has no faith. You, 
my dear sir, have not faith." 

This was a home-thrust ; the controversies of Ox- 
ford passed before Reding' s mind ; but he instantly 
recovered himself. " You cannot expect," said he, 
smiling, " that I, almost a boy, should be able to argue 
with yourself, or to defend my Church or to explain 
her faith. I am content to hold that faith, to hold 
what she holds, without professing to be a divine. 
This is the doctrine which I have been taught at Ox- 
ford. I am under teaching there, I am not yet taught. 
Excuse me, then, if I decline an argument with you. 
With Mr. Willis, it is natural that I should argue ; we 
are equals, and understand each other ; but I am no 
theologian." Here Willis cried out, " my dear Red- 
ing, what I say is, ' Come and see.' Don't stand at the 


door arguing : but enter the great home of the soul, 
enter and adore." " But," said Reding, " surely 
God wills us to be guided by reason ; I don't mean 
that reason is every thing, but it is at least something. 
Surely we ought not to act without it, against it." 
" But is not doubt a dreadful state ?" said Willis, 
" a most perilous state ? No state is safe but that 
of faith. Can it be safe to be without faith ? Now 
have you faith in your Church ? I know you well 
enough to know you have not ; where, then, are you ?" 
" Willis, you have misunderstood me most extraor- 
dinarily," said Charles : "ten thousand thoughts pass 
through the mind, and if it is safe to note down and 
bring against a man his stray words, I suppose there's 
nothing he mayn't be accused of holding. You must 
be alluding to some half sentence or other of mine, 
which I have forgotten, and which was no real sam- 
ple of my sentiments. Do you mean I have no 
worship? and does not worship presuppose faith? 
I have much to learn, I am conscious ; but I wish to 
learn it from the Church under whose shadow my 
lot is cast, and with whom I am content." " He 
confesses," said Willis, " that he has no faith ; he 
confesses that he is in doubt. My dear Reding, can 
you sincerely plead that you are in invincible ignor- 
ance after what has passed between us ? Now sup- 
pose for an instant that Catholicism is true, is it not 
certain that you now have an opportunity of embrac- 
ing it ? and if you do not, are you in a state to die 

Reding was perplexed how to answer ; that is, 
he could not with the necessary quickness analyse 



and put into words the answer which his reason sug- 
gested to Willis's rapid interrogatories. Mr. Morley 
had kept silence, lest Charles should have two upon 
him at once ; hut when Willis paused, and Charles 
did not reply, he interposed. He said that all the 
calls in Scripture were obeyed with promptitude by 
those who were called ; and that our Lord would not 
suffer one man even to go and bury his father. Red- 
ing answered, that in those cases the voice of Christ 
was actually heard ; He was on earth, in bodily pre- 
sence ; now, however, the very question was, which 
was the voice of Christ ? and whether the Church of 
Rome did or did not speak with the voice of Christ ? 
That surely we ought to act prudently ; that Christ 
could not wish us to act otherwise ; that for himself, 
he had no doubt that he was in the place where Pro- 
vidence wished him to be ; but, even if he had any 
doubts whether Christ was calling him elsewhere, 
(which he had not,) but if he had, he should cer- 
tainly think that Christ called him in the way and 
method of careful examination, — that prudence was 
the divinely appointed means of coming at the truth. 
" Prudence !" cried Willis, " such prudence as St. 
Thomas's, I suppose, when he determined to see be- 
fore believing." Charles hesitated to answer. "I 
see it," continued Willis ; and starting up, he seized 
his arm ; " come, my dear fellow, come with me 
directly ; let us go to the good priest who lives two 
streets off. You shall be received this very day. 
On with your hat." And before Charles could shew 
any resistance, he was half out of the room. He 
could not help laughing, in spite of his vexation ; 


lie disengaged his arm, and deliberately sat down. 
" Not so fast," he said ; "we are not quite this sort 
of person." Willis looked awkward for a moment; 
then he said, "Well, at least you must go into a 
retreat ; you must go forthwith. Morley, do you 
know when Mr. de Mowbray or Father Agostino 
gives his next retreat 1 Reding, it it just what you 
want, just what all Oxford men want ; I think you 
will not refuse me." Charles looked up in his face, 
and smiled. " It is not my line," he said at length, 
"I am on my way to Oxford. I must go. I came 
here to be of use to you ; I can be of none, so I must 
go. Would I could be of service ; but it is hopeless. 
Oh, it makes my heart ache." And he went on 
brushing his hat with his glove, as if on the point of 
rising, yet loath to rise. 

Morley now struck in : he spoke all along like a 
gentleman, and a man of real piety, but with a great 
ignorance of Protestants, or how they were to be 
treated. "Excuse me, Mr. Reding," he said, "if, 
before you go, I say one word. I feel very much 
for the struggle which is going on in your mind ; and 
I am sure it is not for such as me to speak harshly 
or unkindly to you. The struggle between convic- 
tion and motives of this world is often long ; may 
it have a happy termination in your case ! Do not 
be offended if I suggest to you that the dearest and 
closest ties, such as your connexion with the Pro- 
testant Church involves, may be on the side of the 
world in certain cases. It is a sort of martyrdom to 
have to break such ; but they who do so have a mar- 
tvr's reward. And then at a University you have so 


many inducements to fall in with the prevailing tone 
of thought ; prospects, success in life, good opinion of 
friends — all these things are against you. They are 
likely to choke the good seed. Well, I could have 
wished that you had been able to follow the dictates 
of conscience at once ; but the conflict must continue 
its appointed time ; we will hope that all will end 

" I can't persuade these good people," thought 
Charles, as he closed the street-door after him, " that 
I am not in a state of conviction, and struggling 
against it ; how absurd ! Here I come to reclaim a 
deserter, and I am seized even bodily, and against 
my will all but hurried into a profession of faith. 
Do these things happen to people every day ? or is 
there some particular fate with me, thus to be brought 
across religious controversies which I am not up to ? 
I a Roman Catholic ! what a contrast all this with 
quiet Hartley !" naming his home. As he continued 
to think on what had passed, he was still less satis- 
fied with it or with himself. He had gone to lecture, 
and he had been lectured ; and he had let out his 
secret state of mind ; no, not let out, he had nothing 
to let out. He had indeed implied that he was in- 
quiring after religious truth, but every Protestant 
inquires ; he would not be a Protestant if he did not. 
Of course he was seeking the truth ; it was his duty 
to do so ; he recollected distinctly his tutor laying 
down on one occasion the duty of private judgment. 
This was the very difference between Protestants 
and Catholics ; Catholics begin with faith, Protest- 
ants with inquiry ; and he ought to have said this to 


Willis. He was provoked he had not said it ; it 
would have simplified the question, and shewn how 
far he was from being unsettled. Unsettled ! it was 
most extravagant. He wished this had but struck 
him during the conversation, but it was a relief that it 
struck him now ; it reconciled him to his position. 


The first day of Michaelmas term is, to an under- 
graduate's furniture, the brightest day of the year. 
Much as Charles regretted home, he rejoiced to see 
old Oxford again. The porter had acknowledged 
him at the gate, and his scout had smiled and bowed, 
as he ran up the worn staircase and found a blazing 
fire to welcome him. The coals crackled and split, 
and threw up a white flame in strong contrast with 
the newly-blackened bars and hobs of the grate. A 
shining copper kettle hissed and groaned under the 
internal torment of water at boiling point. The chim- 
ney-glass had been cleaned, the carpet beaten, the 
curtains fresh glazed. A tea-tray and tea commons 
were placed on the table ; besides a battel paper, 
two or three cards from tradesmen who desired his 
patronage, and a note from a friend whose term had 
already commenced. The porter came in with his 
luggage, and had just received his too ample remu- 
neration, when, through the closing door, in rushed 
Sheffield in his travelling dress. 


" "Well, old fellow, how are you?" he said, shak- 
ing both of Charles's hands or rather arms with all 
his might ; " here we are all again ; I am just come, 
like you. Where have you been all this time ? Come, 
tell us all about yourself. Give me some tea, and 
let's have a good jolly chat." Charles liked Shef- 
field, he liked Oxford, he was pleased to get back ; 
yet he had some remains of home-sickness on him, 
and was not quite in cue for Sheffield's good-na- 
tured boisterousness. "Willis's matter, too, was still 
on his mind. " Have you heard the news ?" said 
Sheffield ; " I have been long enough in College to 
pick it up. The kitchen man was full of it as I 
passed along. Jack's a particular friend of mine, a 
good honest fellow, and has all the gossip of the 
place. I don't know what it means, but Oxford has 
just now a very bad inside. The report is, that 
some of the men have turned Romans ; and they say 
that there are strangers going about Oxford whom 
no one knows any thing of. Jack, who is a bit of a 
divine himself, says he heard the Principal say that, 
for certain, there were Jesuits at the bottom of it ; 
and, I don't know what he means, but he declares 
he saw with his own eyes the Pope walking down 
High Street with the priest. I asked him how he 
knew it 1 he said he knew the Pope by his slouching 
hat and his long beard ; and the porter told him it 
was the Pope. The Dons have met several times ; 
and several tutors are to be discommoned, and their 
names stuck up against the buttery-door. Mean- 
while the Marshal, with two bull-dogs, is keeping 
guard before the Catholic Chapel ; and, to complete 


it, that old drunken fellow Topham is reported, 
out of malice, when called in to cut the Warden of 
St. Mary's hair, to have made a clean white tonsure 
a-top of him." 

"My dear Sheffield, how you run on!" said 
Reding. " Well, do you know, I can tell you a 
piece of real news bearing on these reports, and not 
of the pleasantest. Did you know Willis, of St. 
George's ?" " I think I once saw him at wine in your 
rooms ; a modest, nice-looking fellow, who never 
spoke a word." " Ah, I assure you, he has a 
tongue in his head, when it suits him," answered 
Charles ; " yet I do think," he added musingly, 
" he's very much changed, and not for the better." 
" Well, what's the upshot?" asked Sheffield. " He 
has turned Catholic/' said Charles. " What a fool !" 
cried Sheffield. There was a pause. Charles felt 
awkward ; then he said : "I can't say I was sur- 
prised ; and yet I should have been less surprised 
at White." ■■ Oh, White won't turn Catholic," said 
Sheffield ; " he hasn't it in him. He's a coward." 
" Fools and cowards !" answered Charles : " thus 
you divide the world, Sheffield? Poor Willis!" he 
added ; " one must respect a man who acts ac- 
cording to his conscience." " What can he know 
of conscience ?" said Sheffield ; " the idea of his 
swallowing, of his own free will, the heap of rubbish 
which every Catholic has to believe ! in cold blood, 
tying a collar round his neck, and politely put- 
ting the chain into the hands of a priest ! . . . And 
then the Confessional! 'Tis marvellous!" and he 
began to break the coals with the poker. " It's 



very well," he continued, " if a man is born a 
Catholic ; I don't suppose they really believe -what 
they are obliged to profess ; but how an English- 
man, a gentleman, a man here at Oxford, with all 
his advantages, can so eat dirt, scraping and picking 
up all the dead lies of the dark ages — it's a miracle." 
" Well, if there is any thing that recommends 
Romanism to me," said Charles, " it is what you so 
much dislike : I'd give twopence, if some one, whom 
I could trust, would say to me : ' This is true ; this 
is not true.' "We should be saved this eternal wran- 
gling. Wouldn't you be glad if St. Paul could 
come to life? I've often said to myself: *. Oh, that I 
could ask St. Paul this or that!'" " But the Ca- 
tholic Church isn't St. Paul quite, I guess," said 
Sheffield. " Certainly not ; but supposing you did 
think it had the inspiration of an Apostle, as the 
Roman Catholics do, what a comfort it would be to 
know, beyond all doubt, what to believe about God, 
and how to worship and please Him ! I mean : you 
said, ' I can't believe this or that ;' now you ought 
to have said, * I can't believe the Pope has power 
to decide this or that.' If he had, you ought to 
believe it, whatever it is, and not to say, ' I can't 
believe."' Sheffield looked hard at him: " We 
shall have you a papist some of these fine days," 
said he. " Nonsense," answered Charles ; " you 
shouldn't say such things, even in jest." " I don't 
jest ; I am in earnest : you are plainly on the road." 
" Well, if I am, you have put me on it," said Reding, 
wishing to get away from the subject as quick as he 
could ; " for you are ever talking against shams, and 


laughing at King Charles and Laud, Bateman, White, 
roodlofts, and piscinas." 

" Now you are a Puseyite," said Sheffield, in 
surprise. " You give me the name of a very good 
man, whom I hardly know by sight," said Reding ; 
" but I mean, that nobody knows what to believe, 
no one has a definite faith, but the Catholics and 

Ithe Puseyites; no one says, ' This is true, that 
is false ;' ' this comes from the Apostles, that does 
not.' " " Then would you believe a Turk," asked 
Sheffield, " who came to you with his ' One Allah, 
and Mahomet his Prophet?'" " I did not say a 
creed was every thing," answered Reding, " or that 
a religion could not be false which had a creed ; but 
a religion can't be true which has none." " Well, 
somehow that doesn't strike me," said Sheffield. 
" Now there was Vincent at the end of term, after 
you had gone down," continued Charles ; " you 
know I stayed up for Little-go; and he was very 
civil, very civil indeed. I had a talk with him about 
Oxford parties, and he pleased me very much at the 
time ; but afterwards, the more I thought of what he 
I said, the less was I satisfied ; that is, I had got no- 
thing definite from him. He did not say, ' This is 
true, that is false ;' but, ' Be true, be true, be good, 
be good, don't go too far, keep in the mean, have 
your eyes about you, eschew parties, follow our 
divines, all of them ;' — all which was but putting 
salt on the bird's tail. I want some practical 
direction, not abstract truths." " Vincent is a hum- 
bug," said Sheffield. " Dr. Pusey, on the other 
hand," continued Charles, " is said always to be 


decisive. He says, ' This is Apostolic, that's in the 
Fathers ; St. Cyprian says this, St. Augustine denies 
that ; this is safe, that's wrong ; I hid you, I forbid 
you.' I understand all this ; but I don't understand 
having duties put on me which are too much for me. 
I don't understand, I dislike, having a will of my 
own, when I have not the means to form it justly. 
In such a case, to tell me to act of myself, is like 
Pharaoh setting the Israelites to make bricks without 
straw. Setting me to inquire, to judge, to decide, 
forsooth ! it's absurd ; who has taught me ?" 

" But the Puseyites are not always so distinct," 
said Sheffield ; " there's Smith, he never speaks de- 
cidedly in difficult questions. I know a man who was 
going to remain in Italy for some years, at a distance 
from any English chapel, — he could not help it, — 
and who came to ask him if he might communicate 
in the Catholic churches ; he could not get an answer 
from him ; he would not say yes or no." " Then he 
won't have many followers, that's all," said Charles. 
" But he has more than Dr. Pusey," answered Shef- 
field. " Well, I can't understand it," said Charles ; 
" he ought not ; perhaps they won't stay." " The 
truth is," said Sheffield, " I suspect he is more of a 
sceptic at bottom." " Well, I honour the man who 
builds up," said Eeding, " and I despise the man who 
breaks down." " I am inclined to think you have a 
wrong notion of building up and pulling down," an- 
swered Sheffield ; " Coventry, in his Dissertations, 
makes it quite clear that Christianity is not a religion 
of doctrines." " Who is Coventry?" " Not know 
Coventry? he's one of the most original writers of 


the day : he's an American, and I believe, a congre- 
gationalist. Oh, I assure you, you should read Co- 
ventry, in spite of his being wrong on the question 
of Church-government ; you are not well au courant 
with the literature of the day unless you do. He is 
no party man ; he is a correspondent of the first men 
of the day ; he stopped with the Dean of Oxford 
when he was in England, who has published an Eng- 
lish edition of his " Dissertations," with a Preface ; 
and he and Lord Newlights were said to be the two 
most witty men at the meeting of the British Associa- 
tion, two years ago." " I don't like Lord Newlights," 
said Charles ; " he seems to me to have no principle ; 
that is, no fixed, definite religious principle. You 
don't know where to find him. This is what my fa- 
ther thinks ; I have often heard him speak of him." 
" It's curious you should use the word prin- 
ciple," said Sheffield ; "for it is that which Co- 
ventry lays such stress on. He says that Chris- 
tianity has no creed ; that this is the very point in 
which it is distinguished from other religions ; that 
you will search the New Testament in vain for a 
creed ; but that Scripture is full of principles. The 
view is very ingenious, and seemed to me true, when 
I read the book. According to him, then, Chris- 
tianity is not a religion of doctrines or mysteries; 
and if you are looking for dogmatism in Scripture, 
it's a mistake." Charles was puzzled. "Certainly," 
he said, " at first sight there is no creed in Scrip- 
ture. — No creed in Scripture," he said slowly, as 
if thinking aloud ; " no creed in Scripture, there- 
fore there is no creed. But the Athanasian Creed," 


he added quickly, " is that in Scripture ? It either 
is in Scripture, or it is not. Let me see, it either 
is there, or it is not. What was it that Free- 
born said last term ? . . . Tell me, Sheffield, 
would the Dean of Oxford say that the creed 
was in Scripture or not 1 perhaps you do not fairly 
explain Coventry's view ; what is your impres- 
sion ?" " Why, I will tell you frankly, my impres- 
sion is, judging from his Preface, that he would not 
scruple to say that it is not in Scripture, but a scho- / 
lastic addition." " My dear fellow," said Charles, 
" do you mean that he, a dignitary of the Church, 
would say that the Athanasian Creed was a mistake, 
because it represented Christianity as a revelation of 
doctrines or mysteries to be received on faith ?" 
" Well, I may be wrong," said Sheffield, " but so I 
understood him." " After all," said Charles, sadly, 
" it's not so much more than that other Dean, I for- 
get Ins name, said at St. Mary's before the Vacation ; 
it's part of the same system. Oh, it was after you 
went down, or just at the end of term : you don't go 
to sermons ; I'm inclined not to go either. I can't 
enter upon the Dean's argument; it's not worth 
while. Well," he added, standing up and stretchiDg 
himself, " I am tired with the day, yet it has not been 
a fatiguing one either ; but London is so bustling a 
place." " You wish me to say good night," said 
Sheffield. Charles did not deny the charge ; and 
the friends parted. 



There could not have been a lecture more unfavour- 
able for Charles's peace of mind than that in which 
he found himself this term placed ; yet, so blind are 
we to the future, he hailed it with great satisfaction, 
as if it was to bring him an answer to the perplexities 
into which Sheffield, Bateman, Freeborn, White, 
Willis, Mr. Morley, Dr. Brownside, Mr. Vincent, 
and the general state of Oxford, had all, in one way 
or other, conspired to throw him. He had shewn 
such abilities in the former part of the year, and was 
reading so diligently, that his tutors put him prema- 
turely into the lecture upon the Articles. It was a 
capital lecture so far as this, that the tutor who gave 
it had got up his subject completely. He knew the 
whole history of the Articles, how they grew into 
their present shape, with what fortunes, what had 
been added, and when, and what omitted. With this, 
of course, was joined an explanation of the text, as 
deduced, as far as could be, from the historical ac- 
count thus given. Not only the British, but the 
foreign Reformers were introduced ; and nothing was 
wanting, at least in the intention of the lecturer, for 
fortifying the young inquirer in the doctrine and 
discipline of the Church of England. 

It did not produce this effect on Reding. Whether 
he had expected too much, or whatever was the cause, 
so it was that he did but feel more vividly the senti- 
ment of the old father in the comedy, after consulting 
the lawyers, " Incertior sum multo quam ante." He 


saw that the profession of faith contained in the Arti- 
cles was but a patchwork of bits of orthodoxy, Lu- 
theranism, Calvinism, and Zuinglism ; and this too on 
no principle ; that it was the work of accident, if there 
be such a thing as accident, that it had come down 
in the particular shape in which the English Church 
now receives it, when it might have come down in 
any other shape ; that it was but a toss-up that Angli- 
cans at this day were not Calvinists, or Presbyterians, 
or Lutherans, equally well as Episcopalians. This 
historical fact did but clench the difficulty, or rather 
impossibility, of saying what the faith of the English 
Church was. On almost every point of dispute 
the authoritative standard of doctrine was vague or 
inconsistent, and there was an imposing weight of 
external testimony in favour of opposite interpreta- 
tions. He stopped after lecture once or twice, and 
asked information of Mr. Upton the tutor, who was 
quite ready to give it ; but nothing came of these 
apphcations as regards the object which led him to 
make them. 

One difficulty which Charles experienced was, to - 
know whether, according to the Articles, divine truth 
was directly given us, or whether we had to seek it 
for ourselves from Scripture. Several Articles led 
to this question ; and Mr. Upton, who was a High- 
Churchman, answered him, that the saving doctrine 
neither was given nor was to be sought, but that it 
was proposed by the Church, and proved by the indi- 
vidual. Charles did not see this distinction between 
seeking and proving ; for how can we prove except 
by seeking (in Scripture) for reasons? He put the 


question in another form, and asked if the Christian 
Religion allowed of private judgment ? This was no 
abstruse question, and a very practical one. Had he 
asked a Wesleyan or Independent, he would have had 
an unconditional answer in the affirmative ; had he 
asked a Catholic, he would have been told that we 
used our private judgment to find the Church, and 
then the Church superseded it ; but from this Oxford 
divine he could not get a distinct answer. First, he 
was told that doubtless we must use our judgment 
in the determination of religious doctrine ; but next 
he was told that it was sin (as it undoubtedly is) to 
doubt the doctrine of the Blessed Trinity. Yet, while 
he was told that to doubt of that doctrine was a sin, 
he was told in another conversation that our highest 
state here is one of doubt. What did this mean? 
Surely certainty was simply necessary on some points, 
as on the Object of worship ; how could we worship 
what we doubted of? The two acts were contrasted 
by the Evangelist ; when the disciples saw our Lord 
after the resurrection, " they worshipped Him, but 
some doubted ;" yet, in spite of this, he was told 
that there was " impatience" in the very idea of 
desiring certainty. 

At another time he asked whether the anathemas 
of the Athanasian Creed applied to all its clauses ; 
for instance, whether it is necessary to salvation to 
hold that there is " unus asternus" as the Latin has 
it ; or " such as the Father, . . . such the Holy 
Ghost ;" or that the Holy Ghost is " by Himself 
God and Lord ;" or that Christ is one " by the 
taking of the manhood into God ?" He could get 



no answer. Mr. Upton said, that he did not like 
extreme questions ; that he coidd not and did not 
wish to answer them; that the Creed was written 
against heresies, which now no longer existed, as a 
sort of protest. Reding asked whether this meant 
that the Creed did not contain a distinctive view 
of its own, which alone was safe, but was merely a 
negation of error. The clauses, he observed, were 
positive, not negative. He could get no answer 
further than that the Creed taught that the doctrines 
of " the Trinity" and " the Incarnation" were " neces- 
sary to salvation," it being apparently left uncertain 
what those doctrines consisted in. 

One day he asked how grievous sins were to 
be forgiven, which were committed after baptism, 
whether by faith, or not at all in this life ? He was 
answered that the Articles said nothing on the sub- 
ject ; that the Romish doctrine of pardons and pur- 
gatory was false ; and that it was well to avoid both 
curious questions and subtle answers. 

Another question turned up at another lecture, 
viz. whether the Real Presence meant a Presence of 
Christ in the elements, or in the soul, i. e. in the 
faith of the recipient ; that is, whether the Presence 
was really such, or a mere name. Mr. Upton pro- 
nounced it an open question. Another day Charles 
asked whether Christ was present in fact, or only in 
effect. Mr. Upton answered decidedly " in effect," 
which seemed to Reding to mean no real pi'esence 
at all. 

He had had some difficulty in receiving the doc- 
trine of eternal punishment ; it had seemed to him 


the hardest doctrine of revelation. Then he said to 
himself, " But what is faith in its very notion but an 
acceptance of the word of God, when reason seems 
to oppose it? How is it faith at all, if there is 
nothing to try it?" This thought fully satisfied 
him. The only question was, Is it part of the re- 
vealed word? " I can beheve it," he said, "if I 
know for certain that I ought to believe it ; but if I 
am not bound to believe it, I can't believe it." Ac- 
cordingly he put the question to Mr. Upton, whether 
the eternal punishment of the wicked, in the ordi- 
nary sense of the words, was a necessary doctrine of 
revelation, and whether it was included under the 
anathema of the Athanasian Creed ; again, whether 
it was a doctrine of the Church of England ; that is, 
whether it came under the subscription to the Ar- 
ticles. He could obtain no answer. Yet if he did 
not believe this doctrine, he felt the whole fabric of 
his faith shake under him. Close upon it came the 
doctrine of the Atonement. 

It is difficult to give instances of this kind, with- 
out producing the impression on the reader's mind 
that Charles was forward and captious in his in- 
quiries. Certainly Mr. Upton had his own thoughts 
about him, but he never thought his manner incon- 
sistent with modesty and respect towards himself. 

Charles naturally was full of the subject, and 
would have disclosed his perplexities to Sheffield, 
had he not had a strong anticipation that this would 
have been making matters worse. He thought Bate- 
man, however, might be of some service, and he 
disburdened himself to him in the course of a coun- 


try walk. What was lie to do ? for on his entrance 
he had been told, that when he took his degree he 
should have to sign the Articles, not on faith as then, 
but on reason ; yet they were unintelligible ; and 
how could he prove what he could not construe ? 

Bateman seemed unwilling to talk on the sub- 
ject ; at last he said, " Oh, my dear Reding, you 
really are in an excited state of mind ; I don't like 
to talk to you just now, for you will not see things 
in a straightforward way, and take them naturally. 
What a bugbear you are conjuring up ! You are in 
an Article-lecture in your second year ; and hardly 
have you commenced, but you begin to fancy what 
you will or will not think at the end of your time. 
Don't ask about the Articles now ; wait at least till 
you have seen the lecture through." " It really is 
not my way to be fussed or to fidget," said Charles ; 
" though I own I am not so quiet as I ought to be. 
I hear so many different opinions in conversation ; 
then I go to church, and one preacher deals his blows 
at another; lastly, I betake myself to the Articles, 
and really I cannot make out what they would teach 
me. For instance, I cannot make out their doctrine 
about faith, about the sacraments, about predestina- 
tion, about the Church, about the inspiration of Scrip- 
ture. And their tone is so unlike the Prayer-book. 
Upton has brought this out in his lectures most 
clearly." " Now, my most respectable friend," said 
Bateman, " do think for a moment what men have 
signed the Articles. Perhaps King Charles himself; 
certainly Laud, and all the great Bishops of his day, 
and of the next generation. Think of the most ortho- 


dox Bull, the singularly learned Pearson, the eloquent 
Taylor, Montague, Barrow, Thorndike, good dear 
Bishop Home, and Jones of Nayland. Can't you 
do what they did ?" " The argument is a very 
strong one," said Charles ; " I have felt it : you 
mean, then, I must sign on faith." " Yes, certainly, 
if necessary," said Bateman. " And how am I to 
sign as a Master, and when I am ordained ?" asked 
Charles. •« That's what I mean by fidgetting," an- 
swered Bateman. " You are not content with your 
day ; you are reaching forward to five years hence." 
Charles laughed. " It isn't quite that," he said, " I 
was but testing your advice ; however, there's some 
truth in it." And he changed the subject. 

They talked a while of indifferent matters ; but 
on a pause Charles's thoughts fell back again to the 
Articles. " Tell me, Bateman," he said, '* as a mere 
matter of curiosity, how you subscribed when you took 
your degree." "Oh, I had no difficulty at all," said 
Bateman ; " the examples of Bull and Pearson are 
enough for me." " Then you signed on faith." " Not 
exactly, but it was that thought which smoothed all 
difficulties." " Could you have signed without it?" 
'*. How can you ask me the question? of course." 
"Well, do tell me, then, what was your ground?" 
" Oh, I had many grounds. I can't recollect in a 
moment what happened some time ago." " Oh, it 
was a matter of difficulty ; indeed, you said so just 
now." " Not at all ; my only difficulty was, not 
about myself, but how to state the matter to other 
people." " ^Vhat, some one suspected you ?" "No, 
no ; you are quite mistaken. I mean, for instance, 


the Article says that we are justified by faith only ; 
now the Protestant sense of this statement is point 
blank opposite to our standard divines ; the question 
was, wbat I was to say when asked my sense of it." 
" I understand," said Charles; " now tell me how 
you solved the problem." " Well, I don't deny that 
the Protestant sense is heretical," answered Bate- 
man ; " and so is the Protestant sense of many other 
things in the Articles; but then we need not take 
them in the Protestant sense." " Then in what 
sense?" "Why, first," said Bateman, "we need 
not take them in any sense at all. Don't smile ; 
listen. Great authorities, such as Laud or Bramhall, 
seem to have considered that we only sign the Arti- 
cles as articles of peace ; not as really holding them, 
but as not opposing them. Therefore, when we sign 
the Articles, we only engage not to preach against 
them." Reding thought ; then he said : " Tell me 
Bateman, would not this view of subscription to the 
Articles let the Unitarians into the Church ?" Bate- 
man allowed it would, but the Liturgy would still 
keep them out. Charles then went on to suggest 
that they would take the Liturgy as a Liturgy of 
peace too. Bateman began again. 

" If you want some tangible principle," he said, 
" for interpreting Articles and Liturgy, I can give 
you one. You know," he continued, after a short 
pause, " what it is we hold? Why, we give the 
Articles a Catholic interpretation." Charles looked 
inquisitive. " It is plain," continued Bateman, 
" that no document can be a dead letter ; it must be 
the expression of some mind ; and the question here 


is, whose is what may be called the voice which 
speaks the Articles. Now, if the Bishops, Heads 
of houses, and other dignitaries and authorities, were 
unanimous in their religious views, and one and all 
said that the Articles meant this and not that, they, 
as the imponents, would have a right to interpret 
them ; and the Articles would mean what they said 
they meant. But they do not agree together ; some of 
them are diametrically opposed to others. One clergy- 
man denies Apostolical Succession, another affirms it ; 
one denies the Lutheran justification, another main- 
tains it ; one denies the inspiration of Scripture, a 
second holds Calvin to be a saint, a third considers 
the doctrine of sacramental grace a superstition, a 
fourth takes part with Nestorius against the Church, 
a fifth is a Sabellian. It is plain, then, that the Ar- 
ticles have no sense at all, if the collective voice of 
Bishops, Deans, Professors, and the like is to be 
taken. They cannot supply what schoolmen call 
the form of the Articles. But perhaps the writers 
themselves of the Articles will supply it 1 No ; for, 
first, we don't know for certain who the writers 
were ; and next, the Articles have gone through so 
many hands, and so many mendings, that some at 
least of the original authors would not like to be re- 
sponsible for them. Well, let us go to the Convo- 
cations which ratified them : but they, too, were of 
different sentiments ; the seventeenth century did 
not hold the doctrine of the sixteenth. Such is the 
state of the case. On the other hand, we say that, 
if the Anglican Church be a part of the one Church 
Catholic, it must, from the necessity of the case, 


hold Catholic doctrine. Therefore, the whole Ca- 
tholic Creed, the acknowledged doctrine of the 
Fathers, of St. Ignatius, St. Cyprian, St. Augustin, 
St. Ambrose, is the form, is the one true sense and 
interpretation of the Articles. They may be am- 
biguous hi themselves ; they may have been worded 
with various intentions by the individuals concerned 
in their composition : but these are accidents ; the 
Church knows nothing of individuals ; she interprets 

Reding took some time to think over this : " All 
this," he said, " proceeds on the fundamental prin- 
ciple that the Church of England is an integral part 
of that visible body, of which St. Ignatius, St. Cy- 
prian, and the rest were Bishops ; according to the 
words of Scripture, ' one body, one faith.' " Bate- 
man assented ; Charles proceeded : " Then the 
Articles must not be considered primarily as teach- 
ing ; they have no one sense in themselves ; they 
are confessedly ambiguous ; they are compiled from 
heterogeneous sources ; but all this does not matter, 
for all must be interpreted by the teaching of the 
Catholic Church." Bateman agreed in the main, 
except that he had stated the case rather too strongly. 
" But what if their letter contradicts a doctrine of the 
Fathers? am I to force the letter?" " If such a case 
actually happened, the theory would not hold," an- 
swered Bateman ; " it would only be a gross quibble. 
You can in no case sign an Article in a sense which 
its words will not bear. But fortunately, or rather 
providentially, this is not the case ; we have merely 
to explain ambiguities, and harmonise discrepancies. 


The Catholic interpretation does no greater violence 
to the text than any other rule of interpretation will 
he found to do." " Well, hut I know nothing of 
the Fathers," said Charles ; " others are in the same 
condition ; how am I to learn practically to interpret 
the Articles?" "By the Prayer-book; the Prayer- 
hook is the voice of the Fathers." " How so ?" 
" Because the Prayer-book is confessedly ancient, 
while the Articles are modern." 

Charles kept silence again : " It is very plausible," 
he said ; he thought on. Presently he asked : " Is 
this a received view ?" " No view is received," said 
Bateman ; " the Articles themselves are received, 
but there is no authoritative interpretation of them 
at all. That's what I was saying just now ; Bishops 
and Professors don't agree together." " Well," 
said Charles, " is it a tolerated view ?" " It has 
certainly been strongly opposed," answered Bate- 
man ; " but it has never been condemned." " That 
is no answer," said Charles, who saw by Bateman's 
manner how the truth lay. " Does any one Bishop 
hold it? did any one Bishop ever hold it? has it 
ever been formally admitted as tenable by any one 
Bishop ? is it a view got up to meet existing difficul- 
ties, or has it an historical existence ?" Bateman 
could give but one answer to these questions, as 
they were successively put to him. " I thought so," 
said Charles, when he had made his answer : "I 
know, of course, whose view you are putting before 
me, though I never heard it drawn out before. It 
is specious, certainly ; I don't see but it might have 
done, had it been tolerably sanctioned ; but you 


have no sanction to shew me. It is, as it stands, a 
mere theory struck out by individuals. Our Church 
might have adopted this mode of interpreting the 
Articles ; but from what you tell me, it certainly has 
not done so. I am where I was." 


The thought came across Reding, whether perhaps, 
after all, what is called Evangelical Religion was not 
the true Christianity : its professors, he knew, were 
active and influential, and in past times had been 
much persecuted. Freeborn had surprised and of- 
fended him at Bateman's breakfast-party before the 
Vacation ; yet Freeborn had a serious manner about 
him, and perhaps he had misunderstood him. The 
thought, however, passed away as suddenly as it 
came, and perhaps would not have occurred to him 
again, when an accident gave him some data for de- 
termining the question. 

One afternoon he was lounging in the Parks, 
gazing with surprise on one of those extraordinary 
lights for which the neighbourhood of Oxford is at 
that season celebrated, and which, as the sun went 
down, was colouring Marston, Elsfield, and their 
half-denuded groves with a pale gold- and -brown 
hue, when he found himself overtaken and addressed 
by the said Freeborn in propria persond. Freeborn 
liked a t^te-d-Ute talk much better than a dispute 


in a party ; he felt himself at more advantage in long 
leisurely speeches, and he was soon put out of breath 
when he had to bolt-out or edge-in his words amid 
the ever-varying voices of a breakfast-table. He 
thought the present might be a good opportunity of 
doing good to a poor youth, who did not know chalk 
from cheese, and who, by his means, might be, as he 
would word it, " savingly converted." So they got 
into conversation, talked of Willis's step, which Free- 
born called awful ; and, before Charles knew where 
he was, he found himself asking Freeborn what he 
meant by " faith." 

" Faith," said Freeborn, " is a divine gift, and 
is the instrument of our justification in God's sight. 
We are all by nature displeasing to Him, till He 
justifies us freely for Christ's sake. Faith is like a 
hand, appropriating personally the merits of Christ, 
or is our justification. Now, what can we want 
more, or have more, than those merits ? Faith, then, 
is every thing, and does every thing for us. You 
see, then, how important it is to have a right view 
about justification by faith only. If we are sound 
on this capital point, every thing else may take its 
chance ; we shall at once see the folly of contending 
about ceremonies, about forms of Church-govern- 
ment, about, I will even say, sacraments or creeds. 
External things will, in that case, either be neglected, 
or will find a subordinate place." Reding observed 
that of course Freeborn did not mean to say that 
good works were not necessary for obtaining God's 
favour ; " but if they were, how was justification 
by faith only ?" Freeborn smiled, and said that he 


hoped Reding would have clearer views in a little 
time. It was a very simple matter. Faith not only 
justified, it regenerated also. It was the root of 
sanctification, as well as of Divine acceptance. The 
same act, which was the means of bringing us into 
God's favour, secured our being meet for it. Thus 
good works were secured, because faith would not 
be true faith unless it were such as to be certain of 
bringing forth good works in due time. 

Reding thought this view simple and clear, though 
it unpleasantly reminded him of Dr. Brownside. 
Freeborn added, that it was a doctrine suited to the 
poor, that it put all the gospel into a nutshell, that 
it dispensed with criticism, primitive ages, teachers, 
in sbort with authority in whatever form. It swept 
theology clean away. There was no need to men- 
tion this last consequence to Charles ; but he passed 
it by, wishing to try the system on its own merits. 
" You speak of true faith," he said, M as producing 
good works ; you say that no faith justifies but true 
faitb, and true faith produces good works. In other 
words, I suppose, faith, which is certain to be fruitful, 
or fruitful faith, justifies. This is very much like 
saying that faith and works are the joint means of 
justification." " Oh, no, no," cried Freeborn, " that 
is deplorable doctrine ; it is quite opposed to the 
gospel, it is anti-christian. We are justified by faith 
only, apart from good works." " I am in an Article 
lecture just now," said Charles, " and Upton told 
us that we must make a distinction of this kind : for 
instance, the Duke of Wellington is Chancellor of 
the University, but, though he is as much Chancellor 


as he is Duke, still he sits in the House of Lords as 
Duke, not as Chancellor. Thus, although faith is as 
truly fruitful as it is faith, yet it does not justify as 
being fruitful, but as being faith. Is this what you 
mean?" "Not at all," said Freeborn; "that was 
Melanchthon's doctrine ; he explained away a car- 
dinal truth into a mere matter of words ; he made 
faith a mere symbol, but this is a departure from the 
pure gospel ; faith is the instrument, not a symbol of 
justification. It is, in truth, a mere apprehension, 
and nothing else ; the seizing and clinging which a 
beggar might venture on, when a king passed by. 
Faith is as poor as Job in the ashes ; it is like Job 
stripped of all pride and pomp and good works ; it 
is covered with filthy rags, it is without any thing 
good; it is, I repeat, a mere apprehension. Now 
you see what I mean." " I can't believe I under- 
stand you," said Charles ; " you say, that to have 
faith is to seize Christ's merits, and that we have 
them, if we will but seize them. But surely not 
every one who seizes them, gains them ; because 
dissolute men, who never have a dream of thorough 
repentance or real hatred of sin, would gladly seize 
and appropriate them, if they might do so. They 
would like to get to heaven for nothing. Faith, 
then, must be some particular kind of apprehension ; 
what kind ? good works cannot be mistaken, but an 
' apprehension' may. What, then, is a true apprehen- 
sion ? what is faith ?" " What need, my dear friend," 
answered Freeborn, " of knowing metaphysically 
what true faith is, if we have it and enjoy it ? I do 
not know what bread is, but I eat it ; do I wait till 


a chemist analyses it ? No, I eat it, and I feel the 
good effects afterwards. And so let us be content 
to know, not what faith is, but what it does, and 
enjoy our blessedness in possessing it." "I really 
don't want to introduce metaphysics," said Charles, 
" but I will adopt your own image. Suppose I sus- 
pected the bread before me to have arsenic in it, 
or to be merely unwholesome, would it be wonderful 
if I tried to ascertain how the fact stood V " Did 
you do so this morning at breakfast ?" asked Free- 
born. " I did not suspect my bread," answered 
Charles. "Then why suspect faith?" asked Free- 
born. " Because it is, so to say, a new substance" 
— (Freeborn sighed) — "because I am not used to 
it, nay, because I suspect it. I must say suspect it ; 
because, though I don't know much about the matter, 
I know perfectly well, from what has taken place in 
my father's parish, what excesses this doctrine may 
lead to, unless it is guarded. You say, that it is a 
doctrine for the poor ; now they are very likely to mis- 
take one thing for another ; so indeed is every one. 
If, then, we are told, that we have but to apprehend 
Christ's merits, and need not trouble ourselves about 
any thing else ; that justification has taken place, and 
works will follow ; that all is done, and that salvation 
is complete, while we do but continue to have faith ; 
I think we ought to be pretty sure that we have faith, 
real faith, a real apprehension, before we shut up our 
books and make holiday." 

Freeborn was secretly annoyed that he had got 
into an argument, or pained, as he would express it, 
at the pride of Charles's natural man, or the blind- 


ness of his carnal reason ; but there was no help for 
it, he must give him an answer. " There are, I 
know, many kinds of faith," he said ; " and of course 
you must be on your guard against mistaking false 
faith for true faith. Many persons, as you most 
truly say, make this mistake ; and most important is 
it, all-important I should say, to go right. First, it 
is evident that it is not mere belief in facts, in the 
being of a God, or in the historical event that Christ 
has come and gone. Nor is it the submission of the 
reason to mysteries; nor, again, is it that sort of 
trust which is required for exercising the gift of mi- 
racles. Nor is it knowledge and acceptance of the 
contents of the Bible. I say, it is not knowledge, it 
is not assent of the intellect, it is not historical faith, 
it is not dead faith ; true justifying faith is none of 
these — it is seated in the heart and affections." He 
paused, then added : " Now, I suppose, for practical 
purposes, I have described pretty well what justify- 
ing faith is." Charles hesitated : " By describing 
what it is not, you mean," said he; "justifying 
faith, then, is, I suppose, living faith." " Not so 
fast," answered Freeborn. " Wby," said Charles, 
" if it's not dead faith, its living faith." " It's 
neither dead faith nor living," said Freeborn, " but 
faith, simple faith, which justifies. Luther was dis- 
pleased with Melanchthon for saying that living and 
operative faith justified. I have studied the ques- 
tion very carefully." " Then do you tell me," said 
Charles, "what faith is, since I do not explain it cor- 
rectly. For instance, if you said (what you don't 
say) that faith was submission of the reason to mys- 


teries, or an acceptance of Scripture as an historical 
document, I should know perfectly well what you 
meant ; that is information : but when you say that 
faitli which justifies is an apprehension of Christ, that 
it is not living faith, or fruitful faith, or operative, but 
a something which in fact and actually is distinct 
from these, I confess I feel perplexed." 

Freeborn wished to be out of the argument. 
" Oh," he said, " if you really once experienced the 
power of faith — how it changes the heart, enlightens 
the eyes, gives a new spiritual taste, a new sense to 
the soul ; if you once knew what it was to be blind, 
and then to see, you would not ask for definitions. 
Strangers need verbal descriptions ; the heirs of the 
kingdom enjoy. Oh, if you could but be persuaded 
to put off high imaginations, to strip yourself of your 
proud self, and to experience in yourself the wonder- 
ful change, you would live in praise and thanksgiv- 
ing, instead of argument and criticism." Charles 
was touched by his warmth ; " But," he said, " we 
ought to act by reason ; and I don't see that I have 
more, or so much, reason to listen to you, as to lis- 
ten to the Roman Catholic, who tells me I cannot 
possibly have that certainty of faith before believ- 
ing, which on believing will be divinely given me." 
" Surely," said Freeborn, with a grave face, " you 
would not compare the spiritual Christian, such as 
Luther, holding his cardinal doctrine about justifica- 
tion, to any such formal, legal, superstitious devotee 
as Popery can make, with its carnal rites and quack 
remedies, which never really cleanse the soul or re- 
concile it to God V* " I don't like you to talk so," 



said Reding ; " I know very little about the real 
nature of Popery ; but when I was a boy, I was 
once, by chance, in a Roman Catholic chapel ; and 
I really never saw such devotion in my life — the 
people all on their knees, and most earnestly atten- 
tive to what was going on. I did not understand 
what that was ; but I am sure, had you been there, 
you never would have called their religion, be it 
right or wrong, an outward form or carnal ordi- 
nance." Freeborn said it deeply pained him to hear 
such sentiments, and to find that Charles was so 
tainted with the errors of the day; and he began, 
not with much tact, to talk of the Papal Antichrist, 
and would have got off to prophecy, had Charles 
said a word to afford fuel for a discussion. As he 
kept silence, Freeborn's zeal burnt out, and there 
was a break in the conversation. 

After a time, Reding ventured to begin again. 
" If I understand you," he said, " faith carries its 
own evidence with it. Just as I eat my bread at 
breakfast without hesitation about its wholesome- 
ness, so, when I have really faith, I know it beyond 
mistake, and need not look out for tests of it?" 
" Precisely so," said Freeborn ; " you begin to see 
what I mean ; you grow. The soul is enlightened 
to see that it has real faith." " But how," asked 
Charles, " are we to rescue those from their danger* 
ous mistake, who think they have faith, while they 
have not ? Is there no way in which they can find 
out that they are under a delusion ?" " It is not 
wonderful," said Freeborn, " though there be no 
way. There are many self-deceivers in the world. 



Some men are self-righteous, trust in their works, 
and think they are safe when they are in a state of 
perdition ; no formal rules can be given by which 
their reason might for certain detect their mistake. 
And so of false faith." " Well, it does seem to me 
wonderful," said Charles, " that there is no natural 
and obvious warning provided against this delusion ; 
wonderful that false faith should be so exactly like 
true faith that the event alone determines their dif- 
ference from each other. Effects imply causes: if 
one apprehension of Christ leads to good works, and 
another does not, there must be something in the 
one which is not in the other. What is a false ap- 
prehension of Christ wanting in, which a true appre- 
hension has ? The word apprehension is so vague ; 
it conveys no definite idea to me, yet justification 
depends on it. Is it, for instance, wanting in re- 
pentance and amendment?" " No, no," said Free- 
born ; " true faith is complete without conversion ; 
conversion follows ; but faith is the root." " Is it 
the love of God which distinguishes true faith from 
false ?" " Love ?" answered Freeborn ; " you should 
read what Luther says in his celebrated comment on 
the Galatians. He calls such a doctrine ' pest Hens 
figmeritum,'' ' diaboli portentum ; and cries out against 
the Papists, ' Pereant sophista cum sud maledictd 
glossdP " " Then it differs from false faith in no- 
thins." " Not so," said Freeborn ; " it diners from 
it in its fruits : ' By their fruits ye shall know them.'" 
" This is coming round to the same point again," 
said Charles ; " fruits come after ; but a man, it 
seems, is to take comfort in his justification before 


fruits come, before he knows that his faith will pro- 
duce them." " Good works are the necessary fruits 
of faith," said Freeborn ; " so says the Article." 
Charles made no answer, but said to himself, " My 
good friend here certainly has not the clearest of 
heads ;" then aloud, " Well, I despair of getting at 
the bottom of the subject." " Of course," answered 
Freeborn, with an air of superiority, though in a 
mild tone, "it is a very simple principle, ' Fides 
justificat ante et sine charitate ,-' but it requires a 
divine light to embrace it." They walked awhile in 
silence ; then, as the day was now closing in, they 
turned homewards, and parted company when they 
came to the Clarendon. 


Freeborn was not the person to let go a young 
man like Charles without another effort to gain him ; 
and in a few days he invited him to take tea at 
his lodgings. Charles went at the appointed time, 
through the wet and cold of a dreary November 
evening, and found five or six men already assem- 
bled. He had got into another world ; faces, man- 
ners, speeches, all were strange, and savoured nei- 
ther of Eton, which was his own school, nor of 
Oxford itself. He was introduced, and found the 
awkwardness of a new acquaintance httle relieved 


by the conversation which went on. It was a drop- 
ping fire of serious remarks ; with pauses, relieved 
only by occasional " ahems," the sipping of tea, the 
sound of spoons falling against the saucers, and the 
blind shifting of chairs as the flurried servant-maid 
of the lodgings suddenly came upon them from be- 
hind, with the kettle for the teapot, or toast for the 
table. There was no nature or elasticity in the 
party, but a great intention to be profitable. 

" Have you seen the last ' Spiritual Journal V ' 
asked No. 1 of No. 2 in a low voice. No. 2 had 
just read it. "A very remarkable article that," said 
No. 1, " upon the death-bed of the Pope." " No 
one is beyond hope," answered No. 2. " I have 
heard of it, but not seen it," said No. 3. A pause. 
"What is it about?" asked Reding. "The late 
Pope Sixtus the XlVth," said No. 3 ; " he seems 
to have died a believer." A sensation. Charles 
looked as if he wished to know more. " The 
• Journal' gives it on excellent authority," said 
No. 2 ; " Mr. O'Niggins, the agent for the Roman 
Priest Conversion Branch Tract Society, was in 
Rome during his last illness. He solicited an au- 
dience with the Pope, which was granted him. He 
at once began to address him on the necessity of a 
change of heart, belief in the one Hope of sinners, 
and abandonment of all creature mediators. He 
announced to him the glad tidings, and assured him 
there was pardon for all. He warned him against 
the figment of baptismal regeneration; and then, 
proceeding to apply the word, he urged him, though 
in the eleventh hour, to receive the Bible, the whole 


Bible, and nothing but the Bible. The Pope lis- 
tened with marked attention, and displayed consi- 
derable emotion. When it was ended, he answered 
Mr. O'Niggins, that it was his fervent hope that they 
two would not die without finding themselves in one 
communion, or something of the sort. He declared 
moreover, what was astonishing, that he put his sole 
trust in Christ, ' the source of all merit,' as he ex- 
pressed it — a remarkable phrase." " In what lan- 
guage was the conversation carried on ?" asked Re- 
ding. "It is not stated," answered No. 2; "but 
I am pretty sure Mr. O'Niggins is a good French 
scholar." " It does not seem to me," said Charles, 
" that the Pope's admissions are greater than those 
made continually by certain members of our own 
Church, who are nevertheless accused of Popery." 
" But they are extorted from such persons," said 
Freeborn, " while the Pope's were voluntary." 
" The one party go back into darkness," said No. 3 ; 
" the Pope was coming forward into light." " One 
ought to interpret every thing for the best in a real 
Papist," said Freeborn, " and every thing for the 
worst in a Puseyite. That is both charity and 
common sense." " This was not all," continued 
No. 2 ; "he called together the Cardinals, protested 
that he earnestly desired God's glory, said that in- 
ward religion was all in all, and forms nothing with- 
out a contrite heart, and that he trusted soon to be 
in Paradise, — which, you know, was a denial of the 
doctrine of Purgatory." " A brand from the burn- 
ing, 1 do hope," said No. 3. " It has frequently 
been observed," said No. 4, " nay it has struck me 


myself, that the way to convert Romanists is first to 
convert the Pope." " It is a sure way, at least," 
said Charles timidly, afraid he was saying too much ; 
but his irony was not discovered. " Man cannot do 
it," said Freeborn ; " it's the power of faith. Faith 
can be vouchsafed even to the greatest sinners. You 
see now, perhaps," he said, turning to Charles, "bet- 
ter than you did, what I meant by faith the other 
day. This poor old man could have no merit ; he 
had passed a long life in opposing the Cross. Do 
your difficulties continue?" 

Charles had thought over their former conver- 
sation very carefully several times, and he answered, 
" Why, I don't think they do to the same extent." 
Freeborn looked pleased. "I mean," he said, "that 
the idea hangs together better than I thought it 
did at first." Freeborn looked puzzled. Charles, 
slightly colouring, was obliged to proceed, amid the 
profound silence of the whole party. " You said, 
you know, that justifying faith was without love or 
any other grace besides itself, and that no one could 
at all tell what it was, except afterwards, from its 
fruits ; that there was no test by which a person 
could examine himself, whether or not he was de- 
ceiving himself when he thought he had faith, so 
that good and bad might equally be taking to them- 
selves the promises and the privileges peculiar to the 
gospel. I thought this a hard doctrine certainly at 
first ; but then afterwards it struck me, that faith is 
perhaps a result of a previous state of mind, a blessed 
result of a blessed state, and therefore may be con- 
sidered the reward of previous obedience ; and sham 


faith, or what merely looks like faith, a judicial 
punishment." In proportion as the drift of the former 
part of this speech was uncertain, so was the conclu- 
sion very distinct. There was no mistake, and an 
audible emotion. " There is no such thing as pre- 
vious merit," said No. 1 ; " all is of grace." " Not 
merit, I know," said Charles, "but" — "We must not 
bring in the doctrine of de condigno or de congruo,'' 
said No. 2. " But surely," said Charles, " it is a 
cruel thing to say to the unlearned and the mul- 
titude, ' Believe, and you are at once saved ; do not 
wait for fruits, rejoice at once,' and neither to ac- 
company this announcement by any clear description 
of what faith is, nor to secure them by previous re- 
ligious training against self-deception V " That is 
the very gloriousness of the doctrine," said Freeborn, 
" that it is preached to the worst of mankind. It 
says, ' Come as you are ; don't attempt to make 
yourselves better. Believe that salvation is yours, 
and it is yours; good works follow after.' " " On 
the contrary," said Charles, continuing his argu- 
ment, " when it is said that justification follows upon 
baptism, we have an intelligible something pointed 
out, which every one can ascertain. Baptism is an 
external unequivocal token ; whereas that a man 
has this secret feeling called faith, no one but him- 
self can be a witness, and he is not an unbiassed 

Reding had at length succeeded in throwing that 
dull tea-table into a state of great excitement. " My 
dear friend," said Freeborn, " I had hoped better 
things ; in a little while, I hope, you will see things 


differently. Baptism is an outward rite ; what is 
there, can there be, spiritual, holy, or heavenly in 
baptism ?" " But you tell me faith too is not spiri- 
tual," said Charles. " / tell you !" cried Freeborn, 
" when ?" " Well," said Charles, somewhat puz- 
zled, "at least you do not think it holy." Freeborn 
was puzzled in his turn. " If it is holy," continued 
Charles, " it has something good in it ; it has some 
worth ; it is not filthy rags. All the good came 
afterwards, you said. You said that its fruits were 
holy, but that it was nothing at all itself." There 
was a momentary silence, and some agitation of 
thought. " Oh, faith is certainly a holy feeling," 
said No. 1. "No, it is spiritual, but not holy," said 
No. 2 ; " it is a mere act, the apprehension of Christ's 
merits." " It is seated in the affections," said No. 
3 ; " faith is a feeling of the heart ; it is trust, it is 
a belief that Christ is my Saviour ; all this is distinct 
from holiness. Holiness introduces self-righteous- 
ness. Faith is peace and joy, but it is not holiness. 
Holiness comes after." " Nothing can cause holi- 
ness but what is holy ; this is a sort of axiom," said 
Charles ; "if the fruits are holy, faith, which is the 
root, is holy." " You might as well say that the 
root of a rose is red, and of a lily, white," said 
No. 3. " Pardon me," said Freeborn, " it is, as my 
friend says, an apprehension. An apprehension is a 
seizing ; there is no more holiness in justifying faith, 
than in the hand's seizing a substance which comes 
in its way. This is Luther's great doctrine in his 
' Commentary' on the Galatians. It is nothing in 
itself — it is a mere instrument ; this is what he 



teaches, when he so vehemently resists the notion of 
justifying faith being accompanied by love." 

" I cannot assent to that doctrine," said No. 1 ; 
" it may be true in a certain sense, but it throws 
stumbling-blocks in the way of seekers. Luther 
could not have meant what you say, I am convinced. 
Justifying faith is always accompanied by love." 
" That is what I thought," said Charles. " That is 
the Romish doctrine all over," said No. 2 ; "it is 
the doctrine of Bull and Taylor." " Luther calls it 
* venerium infernale,' " said Freeborn. " It is just 
what the Puseyites preach at present," said No. 3. 
" On the contrary," said No. 1, " it is the doctrine 
of Melanchthon. Look here," he continued, taking 
his pocket-book out of his pocket, " I have got his 
words down, as Shuffleton quoted them in the Di- 
vinity-school the other day. ' Fides significat fidu- 
ciam ; in fiducid inest dilectio ; ergo etiam dilectione 
sumusjusti.' " Three of the party cried, Impossible ; 
the paper was handed round in solemn silence. 
" Calvin said the same," said No. 1 triumphantly. 

" I think," said No. 4, in a slow, smooth, sus- 
tained voice, which contrasted with the animation 
which had suddenly inspired the conversation, " that 
the con-tro-ver-sy, ahem, may be easily arranged. 
It is a question of words between Luther and Me- 
lanchthon. Luther says, ahem, • faith is without love,' 
meaning, ' faith without love justifies.' Melanchthon, 
on the other hand, says, ahem, ' faith is with love,' 
meaning, ' faith justifies with love.' Now both are 
true; for, ahem, faith -without -love justifies, yet 
faith justifies not-without-love." There was a pause, 


while both parties digested this explanation. " On 
the contrary," he added, " it is the Romish doctrine 
that faith-with-love justifies." Freeborn expressed 
his dissent ; he thought this the doctrine of Melanch- 
thon which Luther condemned. " You mean," said 
Charles, " that justification is given to faith with 
love, not to faith and love." " You have expressed 
my meaning," said No. 4. " And what is consi- 
dered the difference between with and and ?" asked 
Charles. No. 4 replied without hesitation, " Faith 
is the instrument, love the sine qud non." Nos. 2 
and 3 interposed with a protest ; they thought it 
legal to introduce the phrase sine qud non ; it was 
introducing conditions. Justification was uncondi- 
tional. " But is not faith a condition ?" asked 
Charles. " Certainly not," said Freeborn ; " ' con- 
dition' is a legal word. How can salvation be free 
and full, if it is conditional ?" " There are no con- 
ditions," said No. 3 ; "all must come from the 
heart. We believe with the heart, we love from the 
heart, we obey with the heart ; not because we are 
obliged, but because we have a new nature." " Is 
there no obligation to obey?" said Charles, surprised. 
" No obligation to the regenerate," answered No. 
3 ; " they are above obligation ; they are in a new 
state." " But surely Christians are under a law," 
said Charles. " Certainly not," said No. 2 ; " the 
law is done away in Christ." " Take care," said 
No. 1 ; " that borders on Antinomianism." " Not at 
all," said Freeborn ; " an Antinomian actually holds 
that he may break the law ; a spiritual believer only 
holds that he is not bound to keep it." 



Now they got into a fresh discussion among 
themselves ; and as it seemed as interminable as it 
was uninteresting, Reding took an opportunity to wish 
his host a good night, and to slip away. He never 
had much leaning towards the evangelical doctrine ; 
and Freeborn and his friends, who knew what they 
were holding much better than the run of their party, 
satisfied him that he had not much to gain by in- 
quiring into that doctrine further. So they will 
vanish in consequence from our pages. 


When Charles got to his room, he saw a letter from 
home lying on his table; and, to his alarm, it had 
a deep black edge. He tore it open. Alas, it an- 
nounced the sudden death of his dear father. He 
had been ailing some weeks with the gout, which at 
length had attacked his stomach, and carried him off 
in a few hours. 

my poor dear Charles, I sympathise with you 
keenly all that long night, and that indescribable 
waking in the morning, and that dreary day of tra- 
vel which followed it! By the afternoon you were 
at home. piercing change ! it was but six or 
seven weeks before, that you had passed the same 
objects the reverse way, with what different feelings, 
and oh, in what company, as you made for the 
railway omnibus ! It was a grief not to be put 


into words ; and to meet mother, sisters, and the 
Dead! .... 

The funeral is over hy some days ; Charles is to 
remain at home the remainder of the term, and does 
not return to Oxford till towards the end of January. 
The signs of grief have been put away ; the house 
looks cheerful as before ; the fire as bright, the mir- 
rors as soft, the furniture as orderly ; the pictures 
are the same, and the ornaments on the mantelpiece 
stand as tbey have stood, and the French clock tells 
the hour, as it has told it, for years past. The in- 
mates of the parsonage wear, it is most true, the 
signs of a heavy bereavement ; but they converse as 
usual, and on ordinary subjects ; they pursue the 
same employments, they work, they read, they walk 
in the garden, they dine. There is no change except 
in the inward consciousness of an overwhelming loss. 
He is not there, not merely on this day or that, for 
so it well might be ; he is not merely away, but, as 
they know well, he is gone and will not return. 
That he is absent now, is but a token and a me- 
morial to their minds that he will be absent always. 
But especially at dinner; Charles had to take a 
place which he had sometimes filled, but then as 
the deputy, and in the presence, of him whom now 
he succeeded. His father, being not much more 
than a middle-aged man, had been accustomed to 
carve himself. And when, at the meal of the 
day, Charles looked up, he had to encounter the 
troubled look of one, who, from her place at table, 
had before her eyes a still more vivid memento of 
their common loss : — aliquid desideraverunt oculi. 


Mr. Reding had left his family well provided for ; 
and this, though a real alleviation of their loss in the 
event, perhaps augmented the pain of it at the mo- 
ment. He had ever been a kind, indulgent father. 
He was a most respectable clergyman of the old 
school ; pious in his sentiments, a gentleman in his 
feelings, exemplary in his social relations. He was 
no reader, and never had been in the way to gain 
theological knowledge ; he sincerely believed all 
that was in the Prayer-book, but his sermons w r ere 
very rarely doctrinal. They were sensible, manly 
discourses on the moral duties. He administered 
holy communion at the three great festivals, saw his 
Bishop once or twice a-year, was on good terms 
with the country gentlemen in his neighbourhood, 
was charitable to the poor, hospitable in his house- 
keeping, and was a stanch, though not a violent, sup- 
porter of the Tory interest in his county. He was 
incapable of any thing harsh, or petty, or low, or 
uncourteous ; and died esteemed by the great houses 
about him, and lamented by his parishioners. 

It was the first great grief poor Charles had now 
had, and he felt it to be real. How did the small 
anxieties which had of late teased him, vanish before 
this tangible calamity ! He then understood the 
difference between what was real and what was not. 
All the doubts, inquiries, surmises, views, which had 
of late haunted him on theological subjects, seemed 
like so many shams, which flitted before him in sun- 
bright hours, but had no root in his inward nature, 
and fell from him, like the helpless December leaves, 
in the hour of his affliction. He felt now where his 


heart and his life lay. His birth, his parentage, his 
education, his home, were great realities ; to these 
his being was united ; out of these he grew. He 
felt he must be what Providence had made him. 
What is called the pursuit of truth, seemed an idle 
dream. He had great tangible duties, to his father's 
memory, to his mother and sisters, to his position ; 
he felt sick of all theories, as if they had taken him 
in ; and he secretly resolved never more to have 
any thing to do with them. Let the world go on as 
it might, happen what would to others, his own place 
and his own path were clear. He would go back 
to Oxford, attend steadily to his books, put aside 
all distractions, avoid bye- paths, and do his best to 
acquit himself well in the schools. The Church of 
England as it was, its Articles, Bishops, preachers, 
professors, had sufficed for much better persons 
than he was ; they were good enough for him. He 
could not do better than imitate the life and death of 
his beloved father ; a quiet time in the country, at a 
distance from all excitements, a round of pious, use- 
ful work among the poor, the care of a vdlage school, 
and at length the death of the righteous. 

At the moment, and for some time to come, he 
had special duties towards his mother ; he wished, as 
far as might be, to supply to her the place of him 
she had lost. She had great trials before her still ; 
if it was a grief to himself to leave Hartley, what 
would it be to her ? Not many months would pass 
over, when she would have to quit a place ever dear, 
and now sacred to her thoughts ; there was in store 
for her the anguish of dismantling the home of many 


years, and the toil and whirl of packing ; a wearied 
head and an aching heart at a time when she would 
have most need of self-possession and energy. 

Such were the thoughts which came upon him 
again and again in those sorrowful weeks. A leaf 
had been turned over in his life ; he could not be 
what he had been. People come to man's estate at 
very different ages. Youngest sons in a family, like 
monks in a convent, may remain children till they 
have reached middle age ; but the elder, should 
their father die prematurely, are suddenly ripened 
into manhood, when they are almost boys. Charles 
had left Oxford a clever, unformed youth ; he re- 
turned a man. 



About four miles from Oxford, a thickly wooded 
village lies on the side of a steep long hill or chine, 
looking over the Berkshire woods, and commanding 
a view of the many-turreted city itself. Over its 
broad summit once stretched a chestnut forest ; and 
now it is covered with roots of trees, or furze, or 
soft turf. The red sand which lies underneath con- 
trasts with the green, and adds to its brilliancy ; it 
drinks too the rain greedily, so that the wide com. 
mon is nearly always fit for walking; and the air, 
unlike the heavy atmosphere of the University be- 
neath it, is fresh and bracing. The gorse was still 
in bloom in the latter end of the month of June, 
when Reding and Sheffield took up then* abode in 
a small cottage at the upper end of this village, — 
so hid with trees and girt-in with meadows, that for 
the stranger it was hard to find, — there to pass their 
third and last Long Vacation, before going into the 

A year and a half had passed since Charles's 
great affliction, and the time bad not been unprofit- 
ably spent either by himself or his friend. Both 
had read very regularly, and Sheffield had gained 


the Latin verse into the bargain. Charles had put 
all religious perplexities aside ; that is, he knew 
of course many more persons of all parties than he 
did before, and became better acquainted with their 
tenets and their characters ; but he did not dwell 
upon any thing which he met with, nor attempt to 
determine the merits or solve the difficulties of this 
or that question. He took things as they came ; and, 
while he gave his mind to his books, he thankfully 
availed himself of the religious privileges which 
the College system afforded him. Nearly a year 
still remained before his examination ; and, as Mrs. 
Reding had not yet fully arranged her plans, but 
was still with her daughters, passing from friend 
to friend, he had listened to Sheffield's proposal, 
to take a tutor for the Vacation, and to find a site 
for their studies in the neighbourhood of Oxford. 
There was every prospect of their both succeeding 
in obtaining the highest honours which the schools 
award: they were both good scholars and clever 
men ; they had read regularly, and had had the 
advantage of good lectures. 

The side of the hill forms a large sweeping 
hollow or theatre just on one side of the village of 
Horsley. The two extreme points may be half a 
mile across ; but the distance is increased to one 
who follows the path which winds through the 
furze and fern along the ridge. Their tutor had 
been unable to find lodgings in the village; and, 
while the two young men lived on one extremity 
of the sweep we have been describing, Mr. Carl- 
ton, who was not above three years older than they, 


had planted himself at a farm-house upon the other. 
Besides, the farm-house suited him better, as being 
nearer to a hamlet which he was serving during the 

" I don't think you like Carlton so well as I 
do," said Reding to Sheffield, as they lay on the 
greensward with some lighter classic in their hands, 
waiting for dinner, and watching their friend as he 
approached them from his lodging. " He is to me 
so taking a man ; so equable, so gentle, so con- 
siderate — he brings people together, and fills them 
with confidence in himself, and friendly feeling to- 
wards each other, more than any person I know." 
" You are wrong," said Sheffield, " if you think I 
don't value him extremely, and love him too ; it's 
impossible not to love him. But he's not the person 
quite to get influence over me." " He's too much 
of an Anglican for you," said Reding. " Not at all," 
said Sheffield, " except indirectly. My quarrel with 
him is, that he has many original thoughts, and 
holds many profound truths in detail, but is quite 
unable to see how they lie to each other — and 
equally unable to draw consequences. He never 
sees a truth until he touches it ; he is ever groping 
and feeling, and, as in hide-and-seek, continually 
burns without discovering. I know there are ten 
thousand persons who cannot see an inch before their 
nose, and who can comfortably digest contradictions : 
but Carlton is a really clever man ; he is no common 
thinker ; this makes it so provoking. When I write 
an essay for him, — I know I write obscurely, and 
often do not bring out the sequence of my ideas in 


due order, — but, so it is, he is sure to cut out the 
very thought or statement on which I especially 
pride myself, on which the whole argument rests, 
which binds every part together ; and he coolly tells 
me that it is extravagant or far-fetched — not seeing 
that by leaving it out, he has made nonsense of the 
rest. He is a man to rob an arch of its key-stone, 
and then quietly to build his house upon it." ** Ah, 
your old failing again," said Reding ; " a craving after 
views. Now what I like in Carlton is, that repose 
of his; — always saying enough, never too much; 
never boring you, never taxing you ; always prac- 
tical, never in the clouds. Save me from a viewy 
man ; I could not live with him for a week, present 
company always excepted." " Now, considering 
how hard I have read, and how little T have talked 
this year past, that is hard on me," said Sheffield. 
" Did not I go to be one of old Thruston's sixteen 
pupils last Long 1 He gave us capital feeds, smoked 
with us, and coached us in Ethics and the Agamem- 
non. He knows his books by heart, can repeat his 
plays backwards, and weighs out his Aristotle by 
grains and pennyweights ; but for generalisations, 
ideas, poetry, oh, it Mas desolation — it was a dark- 
ness which could be felt." " And you stayed there 
just six weeks out of four months, Sheffield," an- 
swered Reding. 

Carlton had now neared them, and, after intro- 
ductory greetings on both sides, he too threw him- 
self upon the turf. Sheffield said, " Reding and I 
were disputing just now whether Nicias was a party 
man." " Of course you first defined your terms," 


said Carlton. " Well," said Sheffield, " I mean by 
a party man, one who not only belongs to a party, 
but who has the animus of party. Nicias did not 
make a party, he found one made. He found him- 
self at the head of it ; he was no more a party man 
than a prince who was born the head of his state." 
" I should agree with you," said Carlton ; " but still 
I should like to know what a party is, and what a 
party man." " A party," said Sheffield, " is merely 
an extra-constitutional or extra-legal body." "Party 
action," said Charles, " is the exertion of influence 
instead of law.'' " But supposing, Reding, there is 
no law existing in the quarter where influence exerts 
itself?" asked Carlton. Charles had to explain ; 
" Certainly," he said, " the state did not legislate 
for all possible contingencies." " For instance," con- 
tinued Carlton, " a prime minister, I have under- 
stood, is not acknowledged in the constitution ; he 
exerts influence beyond the law, but not, in conse- 
quence, against any existing law ; and it would be 
absurd to talk of him as a party man." " Parlia- 
mentary parties, too, are recognised among us," said 
Sheffield, " though extra-constitutional. We call 
them parties ; but who would call the Duke of De- 
vonshire or Lord John Russell, in a bad sense, a 
party man V s " It seems to me," said Carlton, " that 
the formation of a party is merely a recurrence to the 
original mode of forming into society. You recollect 
Deioces ; he formed a party. He gained influence ; 
he laid the foundation of social order." " Law cer- 
tainly begins in influence," said Reding, " for it pre- 
supposes a lawgiver ; afterwards it supersedes influ- 


ence ; from that time the exertion of influence is a 
sign of party." " Too broadly said, as you yourself 
just now allowed," said Carlton : " you should say 
that law begins to supersede influence, and that in 
proportion as it supersedes it, does the exertion of 
influence involve party-action. For instance, has not 
the crown an immense personal influence ? we talk of 
the Court party ,• yet it does not interfere with law, 
it is intended to conciliate the people to the law." 
" But it is recognised by law and constitution," said 
Charles, " as was the Dictatorship." " Well, then, 
take the influence of the clergy," answered Carlton ; 
" we make much of that influence as a principle sup- 
plemental to the law, and a support to the law, yet 
not created or defined by the law. The law does 
not recognise what some one calls truly a ' resident 
gentleman' in every parish. Influence, then, instead 
of law is not necessarily the action of party." " So 
again, national character is an influence distinct from 
the law," said Sheffield, " according to the fine, — 
' Quid leges sine moribus?' " " Law," said Carlton, 
"is but gradually formed and extended. Well, then, 
so far as there is no law, there is the reign of influ- 
ence; there is party without of necessity party-action. 
This is the justification of Whigs and Tories at the 
present day ; to supply, as Aristotle says on another 
subject, the defects of the law. Charles the First 
exerted a regal, Walpole a ministerial influence ; but 
influence, not law, was the operating principle in both 
cases. The object or the means might be wrong, 
but the process could not be called party-action." 
" You would justify, then," said Charles, " the asso- 


ciations or confraternities which existed, for instance, 
in Athens ; not, that is, if they ' took the law into 
their own hands,' as the phrase goes, but if there 
was no law to take, or if there was no constituted 
authority to take it. It was a recurrence to the pre- 
cedent of Deioces." " Manzoni gives a striking in- 
stance of this, in the beginning of his Promessi Sposi," 
said Sheffield, " when he speaks of the protection 
which law ought to give to the weak, being in the 
sixteenth century sought and found almost exclu- 
sively in factions or companies. I don't recollect 
particulars, but he describes the clergy as busy in 
extending their immunities, the nobility their privi- 
leges, the army their exemptions, the trades and 
artisans their guilds. Even the lawyers formed a 
union, and medical men a corporation." 

" Thus constitutions are gradually moulded and 
perfected," said Carlton, '* by extra-constitutional 
bodies, either coming under the protection of law, 
or else being superseded by the law's providing for 
their objects. In the middle ages the Church was 
a vast extra-constitutional body. The German and 
Anglo-Norman sovereigns wished to bring its opera- 
tion under the law ; modern parliaments have super- 
seded its operation by law. Then the state wished 
to gain the right of investitures ; now the state mar- 
ries, registers, manages the poor, exercises ecclesi- 
astical jurisdiction, instead of the Church." " This 
will make ostracism parallel to the Reformation or 
the Revolution," said Sheffield; "there is a battle 
of influence against influence, and one gets rid of the 
other ; law or constitution does not come into ques- 


tion, but the will of the people or the court ejects, 
whether the too-gifted individual, or the monarch, or 
the religion. What was not under the law could not 
be dealt with, had no claim to be dealt with, by the 
law." " A thought has sometimes struck me," said 
Charles, " which falls in with what you have been 
saying. In the last half century there has been a 
gradual formation of the popular party in the State, 
which now tends to be acknowledged as constitu- 
tional, or is already so acknowledged. My father never 
could endure newspapers — I mean, the system of 
newspapers ; he said it was a new power in the State. 
I am sure I am not defending, what he was thinking 
of, the many bad things, the wretched principles, the 
arrogance and tyranny of newspaper-writers, but I 
am trying the subject by the test of your theory. The 
great body of the people are very imperfectly repre- 
sented in Parliament ; the Commons are not their 
voice, but the voice of certain great interests. Con- 
sequently the press comes in, to do that which the 
constitution does not do, to form the people into a 
vast mutual-protection association. And this is done 
by the same right that Deioces had to collect people 
about him ; it does not interfere with the existing 
territory of the law, but builds where the constitution 
has not made provision. It tends, then, ultimately 
to be recognised by the constitution." 

" There is another remarkable phenomenon of a 
similar kind now in process of development," said 
Carlton, " and that is, the influence of agitation. I 
really am not politician enough to talk of it as good 
or bad; one's natural instinct is against it; but it 


may be necessary. However, agitation is getting to be 
recognised as the legitimate instrument by which the 
masses make their desires known, and secure the ac- 
complishment of them. Just as a bill passes in Parlia- 
ment, after certain readings, discussions, speeches, vot- 
ings, and the like ; so the process by which an act of 
the popular will becomes law, is a long agitation, issu- 
ing in petitions, previous to and concurrent with the 
Parliamentary process. The first instance of this was 
about fifty or sixty years ago, when . . . Hallo !" he 
cried, " who is this cantering up to us ?" " I declare 
it is old Vincent," said Sheffield. " He is come to 
dine," said Charles ; "just in time." " How are you, 
Carlton?" cried Vincent; "how d'ye do, Mr. Shef- 
field ? Mr. Reding, how d'ye do ? acting up to your 
name, I suppose, for you were ever a reading man. 
For myself," he continued, " I am just now an eating 
man, and am come to dine with you, if you will let 
me. Have you a place for my horse?" There was 
a farmer near, who could lend a stable ; so the horse 
was led off by Charles ; and the rider, without any 
delay — for the hour did not admit it — entered the 
cottage to make his brief preparation for dinner. 


In a few minutes all met together at table in the 
small parlour, which was room of all work in the 
cottage. They bad not the whole house, limited as 


were its resources ; for it was also the habitation of 
a gardener, who took his vegetables to the Oxford 
market, and whose wife, what is called, did for his 

Dinner was suited to the apartment, apartment 
to the dinner. The book-table had been hastily 
cleared for a cloth, not over-white, and, in conse- 
quence, the sole remaining table, which acted as 
sideboard, displayed a relay of plates, and knives 
and forks, in the midst of octavos and duodecimos, 
bound and unbound, piled up and thrown about in 
great variety of shapes. The other ornaments of ihis 
side-table were an ink-glass, some quires of large 
paper, a straw hat, a gold watch, a clothes-brush, 
some bottles of ginger beer, a pair of gloves, a case 
of cigars, a neck -handkerchief, a shoe-horn, a small 
slate, a large clasp-knife, a hammer, and a handsome 
inlaid writing-desk. 

" I like these rides into the country," said Vin- 
cent, as they began eating ; " the country loses its 
effect on me when I live in it, as you do ; but it is 
exquisite as a zest. Visit it, do not live in it, if 
you would enjoy it. Country air is a stimulus ; 
stimulants, Mr. Reding, should not be taken too 
often. You are of the country party. I am of no 
party. I go here and there, like the bee ; I taste of 
every thing, I depend on nothing." Sheffield said, 
that this was rather belonging to all parties, than to 
none. " That is impossible," answered Vincent ; " I 
hold it to be altogether impossible. You can't be- 
long to two parties ; there's no fear of it ; you might 
as well attempt to be in two places at once. To be 


connected with both is to be united with neither. 
Depend on it, my young friend, antagonist princi- 
ples correct each other. It's a piece of philosophy 
which one day you will thank me for, when you are 
older." " I have heard of an American illustration 
of this," said Sheffield, "which certainly confirms 
what you say, sir. Professors in the United States 
are sometimes of two or three religions at once, ac- 
cording as we regard them historically, personally, 
or officially. In this way, perhaps, they hit the 
mean." Vincent, though he so often excited a smile 
in others, had no humour himself; and never could 
make out the difference between irony and earnest. 
Accordingly he was brought to a stand. Charles 
came to his relief. "Before dinner," he said, "we 
were sporting what you will consider a great para- 
dox, I am afraid ; that parties were good things, or 
rather necessary things." " You don't do me jus- 
tice," answered Vincent, "if this is what you think 
I mean. I halve your words ; parties are not good, 
but necessary ; like snails, I don't envy them their 
small houses, or try to lodge in them." " You mean," 
said Carlton, " that parties do our dirty work ; they 
are our beasts of burden ; we could not get on with- 
out them, but we need not identify ourselves with 
them ; we may keep aloof." " That," said Shef- 
field, "is something like those religious professors 
who say that it is sinful to engage in worldly though 
necessary occupations ; but that the reprobate under- 
take them, and work for the elect." "There will 
always be persons enough in the world who like to 
be party men, without being told to be so," said 


Vincent ; " it's our business to turn them to account, 
to use them, but to keep aloof. I take it, all parties 
are partly right, only they go too far. I borrow 
from each, I co-operate with each, as far as each is 
right, and no further. Thus I get good from all, 
and I do good to all ; for I countenance each, so far 
as it is true." 

" Mr. Carlton meant more than that, sir," said 
Sheffield ; "he meant that the existence of parties 
was not only necessary and useful, but even right." 
" Mr. Carlton is not the man to make paradoxes," 
said Vincent; "I suspect he would not defend the 
extreme opinions which, alas, exist among us at 
present, and are progressing every day." " I was 
speaking of political parties," said Carlton; "but I 
am disposed to extend what I said to religious also." 
" But, my good Carlton," said Vinceut, " Scripture 
speaks against religious parties." " Certainly I 
don't wish to oppose Scripture," said Carlton, " and 
I speak under correction of Scripture ; but I say 
this, that whenever and wherever a Church does not 
decide religious points, so far does it leave the deci- 
sion to individuals ; and, since you can't expect all 
people to agree together, you must have different 
opinions ; and the expression of those different opi- 
nions, by the various persons who hold them is what 
is called a party." "Mr. Carlton has been great, 
sir, on the general subject before dinner," said Shef- 
field, " and now he draws the corollary, that when- 
ever there are parties in a Church, a Church may 
thank itself for them. They are the certain effect 
of private judgment; and the more private judg- 



ment you have, the more parties you will have. 
You are reduced, then, to this alternative, no tolera- 
tion or party ; and you must recognise party, unless 
you refuse toleration." " Sheffield words it more 
strongly than I should do," said Carlton ; " but 
really I mean pretty much what he says. Take 
the case of the Roman Catholics ; they have decided 
many points of theology, many they have not de- 
cided ; and wherever there is no ecclesiastical deci- 
sion, there they have at once a party ; and when the 
ecclesiastical decision at length appears, then the 
party ceases. Thus you have the Dominicans and 
Franciscans contending about the Immaculate Con- 
ception ; they went on contending because authority 
did not at once decide the question. On the other 
hand, when Jesuits and Jansenists disputed on the 
question of grace, the Pope gave it in favour of the 
Jesuits, and the controversy at once came to an 
end." " Surely," said Vincent, " my good and 
worthy friend, the Rev. Charles Carlton, Fellow of 
Leicester, and sometime Ireland Essayist, is not 
preferring the Church of Rome to the Church of 
England." Carlton laughed ; " You won't suspect 
me of that, I think," he answered; "no; all I say 
is, that our Church, from its constitution, admits, 
approves of private judgment ; and that private 
judgment, so far forth as it is admitted, necessarily 
involves parties ; the slender private judgment al- 
lowed in the Church of Rome admitting occasional 
or local parties, and the ample private judgment 
allowed in our Church recognising parties as an 
element of the Church." " Well, well, my good 

l ,r, 8 LOSS AND GAIN. 

Carlton," said Vincent, frowning and looking wise, 
yet without finding any thing particular to say. 
" You mean," said Sheffield, " if I understand you, 
that it is a piece of mawkish hypocrisy to shake the 
head or throw up the eyes at Mr. this or that for 
being the head of a religious party, while we return 
thanks for our pure and reformed Church ; because 
purity, reformation, apostolicity, toleration, all these 
boasts and glories of the Church of England, esta- 
blish party action and party spirit as a cognate bless- 
ing, for which we should be thankful also. Party is 
one of our greatest ornaments, Mr. Vincent." " A 
sentiment or argument does not lose in your hands," 
said Carlton ; " but what I meant was simply that 
party leaders are not dishonourable in the Church, 
unless Lord John Russell or Sir Robert Peel hold a 
dishonourable post in the State." " My young friend," 
said Vincent, finishing his mutton, and pushing his 
plate from him, " my two young friends,— for Carl- 
ton is not much older than Mr. Sheffield, — may you 
learn a little more judgment. When you have lived 
to my age" (viz. two or three years beyond Carl- 
ton's), " you will learn sobriety in all things. Mr. 
Reding, another glass of wine. See that poor child 
how she totters under the gooseberry-pudding; up, 
Mr. Sheffield, and help her. The old woman cooks 
better than I had expected. How do you get your 
butcher's meat here, Carlton ? I should have made 
the attempt to bring you a fine jack I saw in our 
kitchen, but I thought you would have no means of 
cooking it." 

Dinner over, the party rose, and strolled out on 


the green. Another subject commenced. " Was 
not Mr. Willis of St. George's a friend of yours, 
Mr. Reding?" asked Vincent. Charles started; " I 
knew him a little ... I have seen him several times." 
" You know he left us," continued Vincent, " and 
joined the Church of Rome. Well, it is credibly 
reported that he is returning." "A melancholy his- 
tory, anyhow," answered Charles ; " most melan- 
choly, if this is true." " Rather," said Vincent, set- 
ting him right, as if he had simply made a verbal 
mistake, " a most happy termination, you mean ; the 
only thing that was left for him to do. You know 
he went abroad. Any one who is inclined to Ro- 
manise should go abroad ; Carlton, we shall be send- 
ing you soon. Here things are softened down ; there 
you see the Church of Rome as it really is. I have 
been abroad, aud should know it. Such heaps of 
beggars in the streets of Rome and Naples ; so 
much squaliduess and misery ; no cleanliness ; an 
utter absence of comfort ; and such superstition ; 
and such an abuse of all true and evangelical seri- 
ousness. They push and fight while Mass is going 
on ; they jabber their prayers at railroad speed ; 
they worship the Virgin as a goddess ; and they see 
miracles at the corner of every street. Their images 
are awful, and their ignorance prodigious. Well, 
Willis saw all this ; and I have it on good authority," 
he said mysteriously, " that he is thoroughly dis- 
gusted with the whole affair, and is coming back to 
us." " Is he in England now ?" asked Charles. " He 
is said to be with his mother in Devonshire, who, 
perhaps you know, is a widow ; and he has been too 


much for her. Poor silly fellow, who would not 
take the advice of older heads ! A friend once sent 
him to me ; I could make nothing of him. I couldn't 
understand his arguments, nor he mine. It was no 
good; he would make trial himself, and he has 
caught it." 

There was a short pause in the conversation ; 
then Vincent added, " But such perversions, Carl- 
ton, I suppose, thinks to he as necessary as parties 
in a pure Protestant Church." " I can't say you 
satisfy me, Carlton," said Charles ; " and I am 
happy to have the sanction of Mr. Vincent. Did 
political party make men rebels, then would political 
party be indefensible ; so is religious, if it leads to 
apostacy." " You know the Whigs were accused in 
the last war," said Sheffield, " of siding with Bona- 
parte ; accidents of this kind don't affect general 
rules or standing customs." " Well, independent of 
this," answered Charles, " I cannot think religious 
parties defensible on the considerations which jus- 
tify political. There is, to my feelings, something 
despicable in heading a religious party." " Was 
Loyola despicable," asked Sheffield, " or St. Do- 
minic ?" " They had the sanction of their superiors," 
said Charles. " You are hard on parties surely, 
Reding," said Carlton ; " a man may individually 
write, preach, and publish what he believes to be the 
truth, without offence ; why, then, does it begin to 
be wrong, when he does so together with others?" 
" Party tactics are a degradation of the truth," said 
Charles. " We have heard, I believe, before now," 
said Carlton, " of Athanasius against the whole 


world, and the whole world against Athanasius." 
" Well," answered Charles, " I will but say this, 
that a party man must be very much above par 
or below it." " There, again, I don't agree," said 
Carlton ; " you are supposing the leader of a party 
to be conscious of what he is doing ; and, being con- 
scious, he may be, as you say, either much above or 
below the average : but a man need not realise to 
himself that he is forming a party." " That's more 
difficult to conceive," said Vincent, " than any state- 
ment which has been hazarded this afternoon." " Not 
at all difficult," answered Carlton : " do you mean 
that there is only one way of gaining influence ? 
surely there is such a thing as unconscious influ- 
ence?" " I'd as easily believe," said Vincent, "that 
a beauty does not know her charms." " That's 
narrow-minded," retorted Carlton : " a man sits in 
his room and writes, and does not know what peo- 
ple think of him." " I'd believe it less," persisted 
Vincent ; " beauty is a fact ; influence is an effect. 
Effects imply agents ; agency, will and conscious- 
ness." " There are different modes of influence," 
interposed Sheffield; "influence is often spontaneous 
and almost necessary." " Like the light on Moses' 
face," said Carlton. " Bonaparte is said to have 
had an irresistible smile," said Sheffield. " What is 
beauty itself, but a spontaneous influence ?" added 
Carlton ; " don't you recollect ' the lovely young 
Lavinia,' in Thomson ?" " Well, gentlemen," said 
Vincent, "when I am Chancellor, I will give a prize- 
essay on • Moral Influence, its kinds and causes,' 
and Mr. Sheffield shall get it ; and as to Carlton, he 



shall be my Poetry Professor, when I am Convoca- 

You will say, good reader, that the party took 
a very short stroll on the hill, when, we tell you 
that they were now stooping their heads at the lowly 
door of the cottage ; but the terse " littera scripta" 
abridges wondrously the rambling " vox emissa ,-" 
and there might be other things said in the course of 
the conversation, which history has not condescended 
to record. Any how, we are obliged now to usher 
them again into the room where they had dined, and 
where they found tea ready laid, and the kettle 
speedily forthcoming. The bread and butter were 
excellent; and the party did justice to them, as if 
they had not lately dined. " I see you keep your tea 
in tin cases," said Vincent ; "lam for glass. Don't 
spare the tea, Mr. Reding ; Oxford men do not 
commonly fail on that head. Lord Bacon says that 
the first and best juice of the grape, like the primary, 
purest, and best comment on Scripture, is not pressed 
and forced out, but consists of a natural exudation. 
This is the case in Italy at this day ; and they call 
the juice ' lagrima.'' So it is with tea, and with 
coffee too. Put in a large quantity, pour on the 
water, turn off the liquor ; turn it off at once — don't 
let it stand ; it becomes poisonous. I am a great 
patron of tea ; the poet truly says, ' It cheers, but 
not inebriates.' It has sometimes a singular effect 
upon my nerves ; it makes me whistle — so people 
tell me ; I am not conscious of it. Sometimes, too, 
it has a dyspeptic effect. I find it does not do to 
take it too hot ; we English drink our liquors too 


hot. It is not a French failing ; no, indeed. In 
France, that is in the country, you get nothing for 
breakfast but acid wine and grapes ; this is the other 
extreme, and has before now affected me awfully. 
Yet acids, too, have a soothing, sedative effect upon 
one ; lemonade especially. But nothing suits me so 
well as tea. Carlton," he continued mysteriously, 
" do you know the late Dr. Baillie's preventative 
of the flatulency which tea produces ? Mr. Sheffield, 
do you?" Both gave up. " Camomile flowers; a 
little camomile, not a great deal ; some people chew 
rhubarb, but a little camomile in the tea is not per- 
ceptible. Don't make faces, Mr. Sheffield ; a little, I 
say ; a little of every thing is best : ' ne quid nimis.' 
Avoid all extremes. So it is with sugar. Mr. 
Reding, you are putting too much into your tea. I 
lay down this rule : sugar should not be a substan- 
tive ingredient in tea, but an adjective ; that is, tea 
has a natural roughness ; sugar is only intended to 
remove that roughness ; it has a negative office ; 
when it is more than this, it is too much. Well, 
Carlton, it is time for me to be seeing after my horse. 
I fear he has not had so pleasant an afternoon as 
I. I have enjoyed myself much in your suburban 
villa. What a beautiful moon ! but I have some 
very rough ground to pass over. I daren't canter 
over the ruts with the gravel-pits close before me. 
Mr. Sheffield, do me the favour to shew me the way 
to the stable. Good bye to you, Carlton ; good 
night, Mr. Reding." 

When they were left to themselves, Charles 
asked Carlton if he really meant to acquit of party- 


spirit the present party-leaders in Oxford. " You 
must not misunderstand me," answered he ; "I do 
not know much of them, but I know they are per- 
sons of great merit and high character, and I wish 
to think the best of them. They are most unfairly 
attacked, that is certain ; however, they are accused 
of wishing to make a display, of aiming at influence 
and power, of loving agitation, and so on. I cannot 
deny that some things they have done have an unplea- 
sant appearance, and give plausibility to the charge. 
I wish they had, at certain times, acted otherwise. 
Meanwhile, I do think it but fair to keep in view that 
the existence of parties is no fault of theirs. They 
are but claiming their birth-right as Protestants. 
When the Church does not speak, others will speak 
instead ; and learned men have the best right to 
speak. Again, when learned men speak, others will 
attend to them : and thus the formation of a party 
is rather the act of those who follow than of those 
who lead." 


Sheffield had some friends residing at Chalton, a 
neighbouring village, with a scholar of St. Michael's, 
who had a small cure with a house on it. One of 
them, indeed, was known to Reding also, being no 
other than our friend White, who was going into the 
schools, and during the last six months had been 
trying to make up for the time he had wasted in the 


first years of his residence. Charles had lost sight 
of him, or nearly so, since he first knew him ; and 
at their time of life so considerable an interval could 
not elapse without changes in the character for good 
or evil, or for both. Carlton and Charles, who were 
a good deal thrown together by Sheffield's frequent 
engagements with the Chalton party, were just turn- 
ing homewards in their walk one evening, when they 
fell in with White, who had been calling at Mr. Bol- 
ton's in Oxford, and was returning. They had not 
proceeded very far before they were joined by Shef- 
field and Mr. Barry, the curate of Chalton ; and thus 
the party was swelled to five. 

" So you are going to lose Upton ?" said Barry 
to Reding ; " a capital tutor ; you can ill spare him. 
Who comes into his place?" "We don't know," 
answered Charles ; " the Principal will call up one 
of the Junior Fellows from the country, I believe." 
" Oh, but you won't get a man like Upton," said 
Carlton : " he knew his subjects so thoroughly. His 
lecture in the Agricola, I've heard your men say, it 
might have been published. It was a masterly, mi- 
nute running comment on the text, quite exhausting 
it." " Yes, it was his forte," said Charles ; " yet 
he never loaded his lectures ; every thing he said 
had a meaning, and was wanted." " He has got a 
capital living," said Barry ; " a substantial modern 
house, and by the rail only an hour from London." 
" And 500/. a year," said White ; " Mr. Bolton went 
over the living, and told me so. It's in my future 
neighbourhood; a very beautiful country, and a 
number of good families round about." " They say 


he's going to marry the Dean of Selsey's daughter," 
said Barry ; " do you know the family 1 Miss Juliet, 
the thirteenth, a very pretty girl." " Yes," said 
White, " I know them all ; a most delightful family ; 
Mrs. Bland is a charming woman, so very lady- 
like. It's my good luck to be under the Dean's 
jurisdiction ; I think I shall pull with him capi- 
tally." " He's a clever man," said Barry ; " his 
charges are always well written ; he had a high 
name in his day at Cambridge." " Hasn't he been 
lately writing against your friends here, White ?" 
said Sheffield. " My friends?" said Wbite; "whom 
can you mean ? He has written against parties and 
party-leaders ; and with reason, I think. Oh, yes ; 
he alluded to poor Willis and some others." "It 
was more than that," insisted Sheffield ; "he charged 
against certain sayings and doings at St. Mary's." 
" Well, I for one cannot approve of all that is littered 
from the pulpit there," said White ; " I know for a 
fact that Willis refers with great satisfaction to what 
he heard there, as inclining him to Romanism." " I 
wish preachers and hearers would all go over to- 
gether at once, and then we should have some quiet 
time for proper University studies," said Barry. 
" Take care what you are saying, Barry," said 
Sheffield ; " you mean present company excepted. 
You, White, I think, come under the denomination 
of hearers." " I !" said White ; "no such thing. 
I have been to hear him before now, as most men 
have ; but I think him often very injudicious, or 
worse. The tendency of his preaching is to make 
one dissatisfied with one's own Church." " Well," 


said Sheffield, " one's memory plays one tricks, or I 
should say that a friend of mine had said ten times 
as strong things against our Church as any preacher 
in Oxford ever did." " You mean me," said White, 
with earnestness ; " you have misunderstood me 
grievously. I have ever heen most faithful to the 
Church of England. You never heard me say any 
thing inconsistent with the warmest attachment to it. 
I have never, indeed, denied the claims of the Romish 
Church to be a branch of the Catholic Church, nor 
will I, — that's another thing quite ; there are many 
things which we might borrow with great advantage 
from the Romanists. But I have ever loved, and 
hope I shall ever venerate, my own Mother, the 
Church of my baptism." 

Sheffield made an odd face, and no one spoke. 
White continued, attempting to preserve an uncon- 
cerned manner : " It is remarkable that Mr. Bolton, 
who, though a layman, and no divine, is a sensible, 
practical, shrewd man, never liked that pulpit; he 
always prophesied no good would come of it." The 
silence continuing, White presently fell upon Shef- 
field. " I defy you," he said, with an attempt to 
be jocular, " to prove what you have been hinting ; 
it is a great shame. It's so easy to speak against 
men, to call them injudicious, extravagant, and so 
on. You are the only person — " " Well, well, I 
know it, I know it," said Sheffield ; " we're only 
canonising you, and I am the devil's advocate." 

Charles wanted to hear something about Willis ; 
so he turned the current of White's thoughts, by 
coming up and asking him, whether there was any 


truth in the report he had heard from Vincent several 
weeks before; had White heard from him lately? 
White knew very little about him definitely, and 
was not able to say whether the report was true or 
not. So far was certain, that he had returned from 
abroad, and was living at home. Thus he had not 
committed himself to the Church of Rome, whether 
as a theological student or as a novice ; but he could 
not say more. Yes, he had heard one thing more ; 
and the subject of a letter which he had received 
from him corroborated it — that he was very strong 
on the point that Romanism and Anglicanism were 
two religions ; that you could not amalgamate them ; 
that you must be Roman or Anglican, but could not 
be Anglo-Roman or Anglo-Catholic. " This is what 
a friend told me. In his letter to myself," White 
continued, " I don't know quite what he meant, but 
he spoke a good deal of the necessity of faith in 
order to be a Catholic. He said no one should go 
over merely because he thought he should like it 
better ; that he had found out by experience that no 
one could live on sentiment ; that the whole system 
of worship in the Romish Church was different from 
what it is in our own ; nay, the very idea of worship, 
the idea of prayers ; that the doctrine of intention 
itself, viewed in all its parts, constituted a new re- 
ligion. He did not speak of himself definitely, but 
he said generally that all this might be a great dis- 
couragement to a convert, and throw him back. On 
the whole, the tone of his letter was like a person 
disappointed, and who might be reclaimed ; at least, 
so I thought." " He is a wiser, even if he is a 


sadder man," said Charles : " I did not know he 
had so much in him. There is more reflection in all 
this than so excitable a person, as he seemed to me, 
is capable of exercising. At the same time there is 
nothing in all this to prove that he is sorry for what 
he has done." " I have granted this," said White ; 
" still the effect of the letter was to keep people 
back from following him, by putting obstacles in 
their way ; and then we must couple this with the 
fact of his going home." Charles thought a while. 
** Vincent's testimony," he said, " is either a con- 
firmation or a mere exaggeration of what you have 
told me, according as it is independent or not." 
Then he said to himself, " White too has more in 
him than I thought ; he really has spoken about 
Willis very sensibly : what has come to him?" 

The paths soon divided ; and while the Chalton 
pair took the right hand, Carlton and his pupils 
turned to the left. Soon Carlton parted from the 
two friends, and they reached their cottage just in 
time to see the setting sun. 


A few days after, Carlton, Sheffield, and Reding 
were talking together after dinner out of doors about 
White. " How he is altered," said Charles, " since I 
first knew him!" " Altered!" cried Sheffield; "he 
was a playful kitten once, and now he is one of the 


dullest old tabbies I ever came across." " Altered 
for the better," said Charles ; " he has now a steady 
sensible way of talking ; but he was not a very wise 
person two years ago ; he is reading, too, really 
hard." " He has some reason," said Sheffield, "for 
he is sadly behindhand ; but there is another cause 
of his steadiness, which perhaps you know," " I ! 
no indeed," answered Charles. "I thought of course 
you knew it," said Sheffield ; " you don't mean to 
say you have not heard that he is engaged to some 
Oxford girl?" "Engaged!" cried Charles, "how 
absurd !" " I don't see that at all, my dear Reding," 
said Carlton. " It's not as if he could not afford 
it ; he has a good living waiting for him ; and, more- 
over, he is thus losing no time, which is a great 
thing in life. Much time is often lost. White will 
soon find himself settled in every sense of the word, 
in mind, in life, in occupation." 

Charles said that there was one thing which could 
not help surprising him, namely, that when White first 
came up, he was so strong in his advocacy of clerical 
celibacy. Carlton and Sheffield laughed. " And do 
you think," said the former, " that a youth of eighteen 
can have an opinion on such a subject, or knows him- 
self well enough to make a resolution in his own case 1 
Do you really think it fair to hold a man committed to 
all the random opinions and extravagant sayings into 
which he was betrayed when he first left school ?" 
" He had read some ultra-book or other," said Shef- 
field, " or seen some beautiful nun sculptured on a 
chancel-screen, and was carried away by romance — 
as others have been and are." " Don't you suppose," 


said Carlton, " that those good fellows, who now are 
so full of ' sacerdotal purity/ ' angelical blessedness,' 
and so on, will one and all be married by this time 
ten years ?" " I'll take a bet of it," said Sheffield : 
" one will give in early, one late, but there is a time 
destined for all. Pass some ten or twelve years, as 
Carlton says, and we shall find A. B. on a curacy the 
happy father of ten children ; C. D. wearing on a long 
courtship till a living falls ; E. F. in his honeymoon ; 
G. H. lately presented by Mrs. H. with twins; I. K. 
full of joy, just accepted; L. M. may remain what 
Gibbon calls ' a column in the midst of ruins,' and 
a very tottering column too." " Do you really 
think," said Charles, " that people mean so little 
what they say V " You take matters too seriously, 
Reding," answered Carlton ; " who does not change 
his opinions between twenty and thirty? A young 
man enters life with his father's or tutor's views ; he 
changes them for his own. The more modest and 
diffident he is, the more faith he has, so much the 
longer does he speak the words of others ; but the 
force of circumstances, or the vigour of his mind, 
infallibly obliges him at last to have a mind of his 
own ; that is, if he is good for any thing." " But 
I suspect," said Reding, " that the last generation, 
whether of fathers or of tutors, had no very exalted 
ideas of clerical celibacy." " Accidents often clothe 
us with opinions which we wear for a time," said 
Carlton. " Well, I honour people who wear their 
family suit; I don't honour tbose at all who begin 
with foreign fashions and then abandon them." " A 
few years more of life," said Carlton smiling, " will 


make your judgments kinder." " I don't like talkers," 
continued Charles ; " I don't think I ever shall ; I 
hope not." " I know better what's at the bottom of 
it," said Sheffield ; " but I can't stay ; I must go and 
read ; Reding is too fond of a gossip." " Who talks 
so much as you, Sheffield?" said Charles. " But I 
talk fast when I talk," answered he, " and get through 
a great deal of work ; then I give over : but you 
prose, and muse, and sigh, and prose again." And 
so he left them. 

" What does he mean ?" asked Carlton. Charles 
slightly coloured and laughed : " You are a man I 
say things to, I don't to others," he made answer; 
" as to Sheffield, he fancies he has found it out of 
himself." Carlton looked round at him sharply and 
curiously. " I am ashamed of myself," said Charles, 
laughing and looking confused ; " I have made you 
think that I have something important to tell, but 
really I have nothing at all." " Well, out with it," 
said Carlton. " Why, to tell the truth, — no, really, 
it is too absurd. I have made a fool of myself." 
He turned away, then turned back, and resumed; 
" Why, it was only this, that Sheffield fancies I have 
some sneaking kindness for . . . celibacy myself." 
"Kindness for what?" said Carlton. " Kindness for 
celibacy." There was a pause, and Carlton's face 
somewhat changed. " Oh, my dear good fellow," he 
said, kindly, " so you are one of them ; but it will go 
off." " Perhaps it will," said Charles : " oh, I am lay- 
ing no stress upon it. It was Sheffield who has made 
me mention it." A real difference of mind and view 
had evidently been struck upon by two friends, very 



congenial and very fond of each other. There was 
a pause for a few seconds. 

"You are so sensible a fellow, Keding," said 
Carlton, "it surprises me that you should take up 
this notion." "It's no new notion taken up," an- 
swered Charles ; " you will smile, but I had it when 
a boy at school, and I have ever since fancied that I 
should never marry. Not that the feeling has never 
intermitted, but it is the habit of my mind. My 
general thoughts run in that one way, that I shall 
never marry. If I did, I should dread Thalaba's 
punishment." Carlton put his hand on Reding's 
shoulder, and gently shook him to and fro ; " Well, 
it surprises me," he said ; then, after a pause, " I 
have been accustomed to think both cehbacy and 
marriage good in their way. In the Church of 
Rome great good, I see, comes of celibacy ; but, 
depend on it, my dear Reding, you are making a 
great blunder, if you are for introducing celibacy 
into the Anglican Church." " There's nothing against 
it in Prayer-book or Articles," said Charles. " Per- 
haps not ; but the whole genius, structure, working 
of our Church goes the other way. For instance, 
we have no monasteries to relieve the poor ; and if 
we had, I suspect, as things are, a parson's wife 
would, in practical substantial usefulness, be inde- 
finitely superior to all the monks that were ever 
shaven. I declare, I think the Bishop of Ipswich is 
almost justified in giving out that none but married 
men have a chance of preferment from him ; nay, the 
Bishop of Abingdon, who makes a rule of bestow- 
ing his best livings as marriage-portions to the most 


virtuous young ladies in his diocese." Carlton spoke 
with more energy than was usual with him. 

Charles answered, that he was not looking to the 
expediency or feasibility of the thing, but at what 
seemed to him best in itself, and what he could not 
help admiring. " I said nothing about the celibacy 
of clergy," he observed, " but of celibacy generally." 
" Celibacy has no place in our idea or our system of 
religion, depend on it," said Carlton. " It is nothing 
to the purpose, whether there is any thing in the 
Articles against it ; it is not a question about formal 
enactments, but whether the genius of Anglicanism 
is not utterly at variance with it. The experience of 
three hundred years is surely abundant for our pur- 
pose ; if we don't know what our religion is in that 
time, what time will be long enough? There are 
forms of religion which have not lasted so long from 
first to last. Now enumerate the cases of celibacy 
for celibacy's sake in that time, and what will be the 
sum total of them ? Some instances there are ; but 
even Hammond, who died unmarried, was going to 
marry when his mother wished it. On the other 
hand, if you look out for types of our Church, can 
you find truer than the married excellence of Hooker 
the profound, Taylor the devotional, and Bull the 
polemical 1 The very first Reformed primate is mar- 
ried ; in Pole and Parker, the two systems, Roman 
and Anglican, come into strong contrast." "Well, 
it seems to me as much a yoke of bondage," said 
Charles, " to compel marriage as to compel celibacy, 
and that is what you are really driving at. You are 
telling me that any one is a black sheep who does 


not marry." " Not a very practical difficulty to you 
at this moment," said Carlton ; " no one is asking you 
to go about on Coelebs' mission just now, with Aris- 
totle in hand and the class-list in view." "Well, 
excuse me," said Charles, " if I have said any thing 
very foolish ; you don't suppose I argue on such 
subjects with others." 


They had by this time strolled as far as Carlton's 
lodging, where the books happened to be on which 
Charles was at that time more immediately employed ; 
and they took two or three turns under some fine 
beeches which stood in front of the house, before 
entering it. "Tell me, Reding," said Carlton, "for 
really I don't understand, what are your reasons for 
admiring what, in truth, is simply an unnatural state." 
" Don't let us talk more, my dear Carlton," answered 
Reding ; " I shall go on making a fool of myself. 
Let well alone, or bad alone, pray do." It was evi- 
dent that there was some strong feeling irritating 
him inwardly ; the manner and words were too seri- 
ous for the occasion. Carlton, too, felt strongly upon 
what seemed at first sight a very secondary question, 
or he would have let it alone, as Charles asked him. 
" No ; as we are on the subject, let me get at your 
view," said he : " it was said in the beginning, • In- 
crease and multiply ;' therefore celibacy is unnatural." 



" Supernatural," said Charles, smiling. " Is not that 
a word without an idea?" asked Carlton. "We are 
taught by Butler that there is an analogy between 
nature and grace ; else you might parallel paganism 
to nature, and where paganism is contrary to nature } 
say that it is supernatural. The Wesleyan convul- 
sions are preternatural ; why not supernatural V* 
" I really think that our divines, or at least some of 
them, are on my side here," said Charles — " Jeremy 
Taylor, I believe." "You have not told me what 
you mean by supernatural," said Carlton ; " I want 
to get at what you think, you know." " It seems to 
me," said Charles, " that Christianity, being the per- 
fection of nature, is both like it and unlike it ; — like 
it, where it is the same or as much as nature ; unlike 
it, where it is as much and more. I mean by super- 
natural the perfection of nature." " Give me an 
instance," said Carlton. " Why consider, Carlton ; 
our Lord says, ' Ye have heard that it has been said 
of old time,— but I say unto you ;' that contrast de- 
notes the more perfect way, or the gospel. ... He 
came, not to destroy, but to fulfil the law. ... I can't 
recollect of a sudden ; oh, for instance, this is a 
case in point ; He abolished the permission which 
had been given to the Jews because of the hardness 
of their hearts." "Not quite in point," said Carlton, 
" for the Jews, in their divorces, had fallen below 
nature. ' Let not man put asunder,' was the rule in 
paradise." " Still, surely the idea of an Apostle, un- 
married, pure, in fast and nakedness, and at length 
a martyr, is a higher idea than that of one of the 
old Israelites, sitting under his vine and fig-tree, full 


of temporal goods, and surrounded by sons and 
grandsons. I am not derogating from Gideon or 
Caleb ; I am adding to St. Paul." " St. Paul's is a 
very particular case," said Carlton. — " But he him- 
self lays down the general maxim, that it is • good' 
for a man to continue as he was." — " There we come 
to a question of criticism, what ' good ' means ; I 
may think it means ' expedient,' and what he says 
about the ' present distress ' confirms it." — " Well, 
I won't go to criticism," said Charles : " take the 
text, • in sin hath my mother conceived me.' Do 
not these words shew that, over and above the doc- 
trine of original sin, there is (to say the least) great 
risk of marriage leading to sin in married people ?" 
" My dear Reding," said Carlton, astonished, " you 
are running into Gnosticism." " Not knowingly or 
willingly," answered Charles ; " but understand what 
I mean. It's not a subject I can talk about ; but it 
seems to me, without of course saying that married 
persons must sin (which would be Gnosticism), that 
there is a danger of sin. But don't let me say more 
on this point." 

" Well," said Carlton, after thinking awhile, " I 
have been accustomed to consider Christianity as 
the perfection of man as a whole, body, soul, and 
spirit. Don't misunderstand me. Pantheists say 
body and intellect, leaving out the moral principle ; 
but I say spirit as well as mind. Spirit, or the 
principle of religious faith or obedience, should be 
the master principle, the hegemonicon. To this both 
intellect and body are subservient ; but as tbis su- 
premacy does not imply the ill-usage, the bondage 



of the intellect, neither does it of the body. Both 
should be well treated." — " Well, I think, on the 
contrary, it does imply in one sense the bondage 
of intellect and body too. What is faith but the 
submission of the intellect ? and as J every high 
thought is brought into captivity,' so are we ex- 
pressly told to bring the body into subjection too. 
They are both well treated, when they are treated 
so as to be made fit instruments of the sovereign 
principle." " That is what I call unnatural," said 
Carlton. "And it is what I mean by supernatural," 
answered Reding, getting a little too earnest. " How 
is it supernatural, or adding to nature, to destroy a 
part of it ?" asked Carlton. Charles was puzzled. 
It was a way, he said, towards perfection ; but he 
thought that perfection came after death, not here. 
Our nature could not be perfect with a corruptible 
body ; the body was treated now as a body of death. 
"Well, Reding," answered Carlton, "you make Chris- 
tianity a very different religion from what our Church 
considers it, I really think ;" and he paused awhile. 
" Look here," he proceeded ; " how can we re- 
joice in Christ, as having been redeemed by Him, 
if we are in this sort of gloomy penitential state ? 
How much is said in St. Paul about peace, thanks- 
giving, assurance, comfort, and the like ! Old things 
are passed away ; the Jewish Law is destroyed ; par- 
don and peace are come ; that is the Gospel." " Don't 
you think, then," said Charles, " that we should 
grieve for the sins into which we are daily betrayed, 
and for the more serious offences which from time 
to time we may have committed ?" " Certainly ; 


we do so in Morning and Evening Prayer, and in 
the Communion Service." " Well, but supposing a 
youth, as is so often the case, has neglected religion 
altogether, and has a whole load of sins, and very 
heinous ones, all upon him, — do you think that, 
when he turns over a new leaf, and comes to Com- 
munion, he is, on saying the Confession, (saying it 
with that contrition with which such persons ought to 
say it,) pardoned at once, and has nothing more to 
fear about his past sins ?" " I should say, * Yes,' " 
answered Carlton. " Really," said Charles thought- 
fully. " Of course," said Carlton, " I suppose him 
truly sorry or penitent ; whether he is so or not, his 
future life will shew." " Well, somehow I cannot 
master tbis idea," said Charles ; " I think most 
serious persons, even for a little sin, would go on 
fidgeting themselves, and not suppose they gained 
pardon directly they asked for it." " Certainly," 
answered Carlton ; " but God pardons those who do 
not pardon themselves." " That is," said Charles, 
" who don't at once feel peace, assurance, and com- 
fort ; who dont feel the perfect joy of tbe Gospel." 
" Such persons grieve, but rejoice too," said Carlton. 
" But tell me, Carlton," said Reding ; " is, or is 
not, their not forgiving themselves, tbeir sorrow and 
trouble, pleasing to God ?" " Surely." " Thus a 
certain self-infliction for sin committed is pleasing 
to Him ; and, if so, how does it matter whetber it is 
inflicted on mind or body 1" " It is not properly 
a self-infliction," answered Carlton ; " self-infliction 
implies intention; grief at sin is something spon- 
taneous. When you afflict yourself on purpose, 


then at once you pass from pure Christianity." 
" Well," said Charles, " I certainly fancied that fast- 
ing, abstinence, labours, celibacy, might be taken as 
a make-up for sin. It is not a very far-fetched idea. 
You recollect Dr. Johnson's standing in the rain 
in the market-place at Lichfield when a man, as a 
penance for some disobedience to his father when a 
boy." " But, my dear Reding," said Carlton, " let 
me bring you back to what you said originally, and 
to my answer to you, which what you now say only 
makes more apposite. You began by saying that 
celibacy was a perfection of nature, now you make 
it a penance ; first it is good and glorious, next it is 
a medicine and punishment." "Perhaps our highest 
perfection here is penance," said Charles ; " but I 
don't know ; I don't profess to have clear ideas 
upon the subject. I have talked more than I like. 
Let us at length give over." 

They did, in consequence, pass to other sub- 
jects connected with Charles's reading ; then they 
entered the house, and set-to upon Polybius : but 
it could not be denied that for the rest of the day 
Carlton's manner was not quite his own, as if some- 
thing had annoyed him. Next morning he was as 


It is impossible to stop the growth of the mind. 
Here was Charles with his thoughts turned away 
from religious controversy for two years, yet with 



his religious views progressing, unknown to himself, 
the whole time. It could not have been otherwise, 
if he was to live a religious life at all. If he was to 
worship and obey his Creator, intellectual acts, con- 
clusions, and judgments, must accompany that wor- 
ship and obedience. He might not realise his own 
belief till questions had been put to him ; but then a 
single discussion with a friend, such as the above 
with Carlton, would bring out what he really did 
hold to his own apprehension, — would ascertain for 
him the limits of each opinion as he held it, and 
the inter-relations of opinion with opinion. He had 
not yet given names to these opinions, much less 
had they taken a theological form ; nor could they, 
under his circumstances, be expressed in theological 
language ; but here he was, a young man of twenty- 
two, professing in an hour's conversation with a 
friend, what really were the Catholic doctrines and 
usages, of penance, purgatory, counsels of perfec- 
tion, mortification of self, and clerical celibacy. No 
wonder that all this annoyed Carlton, though he no 
more than Charles perceived that all this Catholi- 
cism did in fact lie hid under his professions ; but he 
felt in what Reding put out the presence of some- 
thing, as he expressed it, " very unlike the Church of 
England ;" something new and unpleasant to him, and 
withal something which had a body in it, which had 
momentum, which could not be passed over as a 
vague sudden sound or transitory cloud, but which 
had much behind it, which made itself felt, which 
struck heavily. 

And here we see what is meant when a person 


says that the Catholic system comes home to his 
mind, fulfils his ideas of religion, satisfies his sym- 
pathies, and the like ; and thereupon becomes a 
Catholic. Such a person is often said to go by 
private judgment, to be choosing his religion by his 
own standard of what a religion ought to be. Now 
it need not be denied that those who are external 
to the Church must begin with private judgment ; 
they use it in order ultimately to supersede it ; as a 
man out of doors uses a lamp in a dark night, and 
puts it out when he gets home. What would be 
thought of his bringing it into his drawing-room? 
what would the goodly company there assembled 
before a genial hearth and under glittering chan- 
deliers, the bright ladies and the well-dressed gen- 
tlemen, say to him if he came in with a greatcoat on 
his back, a hat on his head, an umbrella under his 
arm, and a large stable-lantern in his hand ? Yet 
what would be thought, on the other hand, if he 
precipitated himself into the inhospitable night and 
the war of the elements in his ball-dress ? " When 
the king came in to see the guests, he saw a man who 
had not on a wedding-garment :" he saw a man who 
determined to live in the Church as he had lived out 
of it, who would not use his privileges, who would 
not exchange reason for faith, who would not accom- 
modate his thoughts and doings to the glorious scene 
which surrounded him, who was groping for the 
hidden treasure and digging for the pearl of price in 
the high, lustrous, all-jewelled Temple of the Lord 
of Hosts ; who shut his eyes and speculated, when 
he might open them and see. There is no absurdity, 


then, or inconsistency in a person first using his pri- 
vate judgment, and then denouncing its use. Cir- 
cumstances change duties. 

But still, after all, the person in question does 
not, strictly speaking, judge of the external system 
presented to him by his private ideas, but he brings 
in the dicta of that system to confirm and justify 
certain private judgments and personal feelings and 
habits already existing. Charles, for instance, felt a 
difficulty in determining how and when the sins of a 
Christian are forgiven ; he had a great notion that 
celibacy was better than married life. He was not 
the first person in the Church of England who had 
had such thoughts ; to numbers, doubtless, before 
him they had occurred ; but these numbers had 
looked abroad, and seen nothing around them to 
justify what they felt, and their feelings had, in con- 
sequence, either festered within them, or withered 
away. But when a man, thus constituted within, 
falls under the shadow of Catholicism without, then 
that mighty Creed at once produces an influence 
upon him. He sees that it justifies his thoughts, 
explains his feelings ; he understands that it numbers, 
corrects, harmonises, completes them ; and he is led 
to ask what is the authority of this foreign teaching ; 
and then, when he finds it is what was once received 
in England from north to south, in England from 
the very time that Christianity was introduced here ; 
that as far as historical records go, Christianity and 
Catholicity are synonymous ; that it is still the faith 
of the largest section of the Christian world ; and that 
the faith of his own country is held no where but 


within her own limits and those of her own colonies ; 
nay further, that it is very difficult to say what faith 
she has, or that she has any, — then he submits him- 
self to the Catholic Church, not by a process of criti- 
cism, but as a pupil to a teacher. 

In saying this, of course it is not denied, on the 
one hand, that there may be persons who come to 
the Catholic Church on imperfect motives or in a 
wrong way ; who choose it by criticism, and who, 
unsubdued by its majesty and its grace, go on criti- 
cising when they are in it ; and who, if they persist 
and do not learn humility, may criticise themselves 
out of it again. Nor is it denied, on the other hand, 
that some who are not Catholics may possibly choose 
(for instance) Methodism, in the above religious 
way, viz. because it confirms and justifies the inward 
feelings of their hearts. This is certainly possible in 
idea ; yet what there is venerable, awful, superhu- 
man in the Wesleyan Conference to persuade one to 
take it as a prophet, is a perplexing problem ; and 
moreover, the matter of fact we conceive to lie the 
other way, viz. that Wesleyans and other sectaries 
put themselves above their system, not below it; 
and though they may in bodily position " sit under" 
their preacher, yet in the position of their souls and 
spirits, minds and judgments, they are exalted high 
above him. 

But to return to the subject of our narrative. 
What a mystery is the soul of man ! Here was 
Charles, busy with Aristotle and Euripides, Thucy- 
dides and Lucretius, yet all the while growing to- 
wards the Church, " to the measure of the stature of 


the fulness of Christ." His mother had said to him 
that he could not escape his destiny; it was true, 
though it was to be fulfilled in a way which she, affec- 
tionate heart, could not compass, did not dream of. 
He could not escape the destiny of being one of the 
elect of God ; he could not escape that destiny which 
the grace of his Redeemer had stamped on his soul in 
baptism, which his good angel had seen written there, 
and had done his zealous part to keep inviolate and 
bright, which his own co-operation with the influences 
of Heaven had confirmed and secured. He could 
not escape the destiny, in due time, in God's time — 
(though it might be long, though angels might be an- 
xious, though the Church might plead, as if defrauded 
of her promised increase of a stranger, yet a son ; yet 
come it must, it was written in heaven, and the slow 
wheels of time each hour brought it nearer) — he 
could not ultimately escape his destiny of becoming 
a Catholic. And even before that blessed hour, as an 
opening flower scatters sweets, so the strange un- 
known odour, pleasing to some, odious to others, went 
abroad from him upon the winds, and made them 
marvel what could be near them, and made them 
look curiously and anxiously at him, while he was 
unconscious of his own condition. Let us be pa- 
tient with him, as his Maker is patient, and bear that 
he should do a work slowly, which he will do well. 

Alas ! while Charles had been growing one way, 
Sheffield had been growing another ; and what that 
growth had been, will appear from a conversation 
which took place between the two friends, and which 
shall be related in the following chapter. 



Carlton had opened the small church he was serv- 
ing, for Saints'-day services during the Long Va- 
cation ; and not being in the way to have any con- 
gregation, and the church at Horsley being closed 
except on Sundays, he had asked his two pupils to 
walk over with him on St. Matthew's-day, which, as 
the season was fine, and the walk far from a dull one, 
they were very glad to do- When church was over, 
Carlton had to attend a sick-call which lay still fur- 
ther from Horsley, and the two young men walked 
back together. 

" I did not know Carlton was so much of a party 
man," said Sheffield ; " did not his reading the Atha- 
nasian Creed strike you V " That's no mark of 
party surely," answered Charles. " To read it on 
days like these, I think, is a mark of party ; it's going 
out of the way." Charles did not see how obeying 
in so plain a matter the clear direction of the Prayer- 
book could be a party act. " Direction !" said Shef- 
field, " as if the question were not, is that direction 
now binding? the sense, the understanding of the 
Church of this day determines its obligation." " The 
prima facie view of the matter," said Charles, " is 
that they who do but follow what the Prayer-book 
enjoins are of all people farthest from being a party." 
" Not at all," said Sheffield ; " rigid adherence to old 
customs surely may be the badge of a party. Now 
consider ; ten years ago, before the study of Church- 
history was revived, Arianism and Athanasianism 


either were not thought of at all, or if thought of, 
were considered as questions of words, at least as 
held by most minds — one as good as the other." " I 
should say so too, in one sense," said Charles ; ** that 
is, I should hope that numbers of persons, for instance 
the unlearned, who were in Arian communities, spoke 
Arian language, and yet did not mean it. I think I 
have heard that some ancient missionary of the Goths 
or Huns was an Arian." " Well, I will speak more 
precisely," said Sheffield : " an Oxford man, some ten 
years since, was going to publish a history of the 
Nicene Council ; and the bookseller proposed to him 
to prefix an engraving of St. Athanasius, which he 
had found in some old volume. He was strongly 
dissuaded from doing so by a brother clergyman, not 
from any feeling of his own, but because ' Athanasius 
was a very unpopular name among us.' " " One swal- 
low does not make a spring," said Charles. " This 
clergyman," continued Sheffield, " was a friend of 
the most High-Church writers of the day." " Of 
course," said Reding, "there has always been a hete- 
rodox school in our Church — I know that well enough 
— but it never has been powerful. Your lax friend 
was one of them." " I believe not, indeed,'' answered 
Sheffield ; " he lived out of controversy, was a literary, 
accomplished person, and a man of piety to boot. 
He did not express any feeling of his own ; he did 
but witness to a fact, that the name of Athanasius 
was unpopular." " So little was known about his- 
tory," said Charles, " this is not surprising. St. Atha- 
nasius, you know, did not write the Creed called after 
him. It is possible to think him intemperate, with- 


out thinking the Creed wrong." " Well, then, again ; 
there's Beatson, Divinity Professor ; no one will call 
him in any sense a party man : he was put in by the 
Tories, and never has committed himself to any libe- 
ral theories in theology. Now, a man who attended 
his private lectures assures me that he told the men, 
' D'ye see,' said he, ' I take it, that the old Church-of- 
England mode of handling the Creed went out with 
Bull. After Locke wrote, the old orthodox phrase- 
ology came into disrepute.' " " Well, perhaps he 
meant," said Charles, " that learning died away, which 
was the case. The old theological language is plainly 
a learned language ; when fathers and schoolmen were 
not read, of course it would be in abeyance ; when 
they were read again, it has revived." " No, no," 
answered Sheffield, " he said much more on another 
occasion. Speaking of creeds, and the like, 'I hold,' 
he said, ' that the majority of the educated laity of 
our Church are Sabellians.' " 

Charles was silent, and hardly knew what reply 
to make. Sheffield went on : "I was present some 
years ago, when I was quite a boy, when a sort of 
tutor of mine was talking to one of the most learned 
and orthodox divines of the day, a man whose name 
has never been associated with party, and the near 
relation and connexion of high dignitaries, about a 
plan of his own for writing a history of the Councils. 
This good and able man listened with politeness, ap- 
plauded the project ; then added, in a laughing way, 
( You know you have chosen just the dullest subject 
in Church-history.' Now the Councils begin with 
the Nicene Creed, and embrace nearly all doctrinal 


subjects whatever." " My dear Sheffield," said 
Charles, " you have fallen iu with a particular set 
or party of men yourself; very respectable good 
men, I don't doubt, but no fair specimens of the 
whole Church." " I don't bring them as authori- 
ties," answered Sheffield, " but as witnesses." " Still," 
said Charles, " I know perfectly well, that there was 
a controversy at the end of last century between 
Bishop Horsley and others, in which he brought out 
distinctly one part at least of the Athanasian doc- 
trine." " His controversy was not a defence of the 
Athanasian Creed, I know well," said Sheffield; "for 
the subject came into Upton's Article-lecture ; it 
was with Priestley ; but whatever it was, divines 
would only think it all very fine, just as his Sermons 
on Prophecy. It is another question whether they 
would know the worth either of the one or of the 
other. They receive the scholastic terms about the 
Trinity, just as they receive the doctrine that the 
Pope is Antichrist. When Horsley says the latter, 
or something of the kind, good old clergymen say, 
* Certainly, certainly, oh yes, it's the old Church-of- 
England doctrine,' thinking it right, indeed, to be 
maintained, but not caring themselves to maintain it, 
or at most professing it just when mentioned, but not 
really thinking about it from one year's end to the 
other. And so with regard to the doctrine of the 
Trinity, they say, • the great Horsley,' * the power- 
ful Horsley ;' they don't indeed dispute, but they 
don't care about his doctrine ; they look on him as 
a doughty champion, armed cap-a-pie, who has put 
down dissent, who has cut off the head of some im- 


pudent non- protectionist, or insane chartist ; or of 
some religious innovator, who, under colour of theo- 
logy, had run a tilt against tithes and Church-rates." 
" I can't think so badly of our present divines," 
said Charles ; " I know that in this very place there 
are various orthodox writers, whom no one would 
call party men." " Stop," said Sheffield, " under- 
stand me, I was not speaking against them. I was 
but saying that these anti-Athanasian views were not 
unfrequent. I have been in the way of hearing a 
good deal on the subject at my private tutor's, and 
have kept my eyes about me since I have been here. 
The Bishop of Derby was a friend of Sheen's (my 
private tutor), and was promoted when I was with 
him ; and Sheen told me that he wrote to him on that 
occasion, ' What shall I read ? I don't know any thing 
of theology.' I rather think he was recommended, 
or proposed, to read Scott's Bible." " It's easy to 
bring instances," said Charles, " when you have all 
your own way ; what you say is evidently all an ex- 
parte statement." " Take again Shipton, who died 
lately," continued Sheffield ; " what a high position 
he held in the Church; yet it is perfectly well 
known that he thought it a mistake to use the word 
' Person' in the doctrine of the Trinity. What makes 
this stronger is, that he was so very severe on clergy- 
men (Tractarians, for instance) who evade the sense 
of the Articles. Now he was a singularly honest, 
straightforward man ; he despised money ; he cared 
nothing for public opinion ; yet he was a Sabellian. 
Would he have eaten the bread of the Church, as it 
is called, for a day, unless he had felt that his opi- 


nions were not inconsistent with his profession as 
Dean of Bath, and Prebendary of Dorchester 1 Is 
it not plain that he considered the practice of the 
Church to have modified, to have re-interpreted its 
documents?" " Why," said Charles, " the practice 
of the Church cannot make black white ; or, if a sen- 
tence means yes, make it mean no. I won't deny that 
all words are so vague and uncertain in their sense, 
and so uniformly need a comment, that the teaching 
of the day has great influence in determining their 
sense ; but the question is, whether the counter- 
teaching of every dean, every prebendary, every 
clergyman, every bishop in the whole Church could 
make the Athanasian Creed Sabellian ; I think not." 
"Certainly not," answered Sheffield ; " but the clergy- 
men I speak of simply say that they are not bound 
to the details of the Creed, only to the great out- 
line that there is a Trinity." " Great outline !" said 
Charles, " what stuff! an Unitarian would not deny 
that. He, of course, believes in Father, Son, and 
Holy Spirit : though he thinks the Son a creature, and 
the Spirit an influence." "Well, I don't deny," said 
Sheffield, " that if Dean Shipton was a sound mem- 
ber of the Church, Dr. Priestley might have been also. 
But my doubt is, whether, if the Tractarian school had 
not risen, Priestley might not have been, had he lived 
to this time, I will not say a positively sound mem- 
ber, but sound enough for preferment." " If the 
Tractarian school had not risen ! that is but saying 
if our Church was other than it is. What is that 
school but a birth, an offspring of the Church ? and 
if the Church had not given birth to one party of 


men for its defence, it would have given birth to an- 
other." " No, no," said Sheffield ; " I assure you the 
old school of doctrine was all but run out when they 
began ; and I declare I wish they had let things alone. 
There was the doctrine of the Apostolical Succes- 
sion ; a few good old men were its sole remaining 
professors in the Church ; and a great personage, on 
one occasion, quite scoffed at their persisting to hold 
it. He maintained the doctrine went out with the 
non-jurors. ' You are so few,' he said, 'that we can 
count you.' " 

Charles was not pleased with the subject, on 
various accounts. He did not like what seemed to 
him an attack of Sheffield's upon the Church of 
England ; and, besides, he began to feel uncomfort- 
able misgivings and doubts whether that attack was 
not well founded, to which he did not like to be 
exposed. Accordingly he kept silence, and, after a 
short interval, attempted to change the subject ; but 
Sheffield's hand was in, and he would not be baulked ; 
so he presently began again. " I have been speak- 
ing," he said, " of the liberal section of our Church. 
There are four parties in the Church. Of these the 
old Tory, or country party, which is out and out the 
largest, has no opinion at all, but merely takes up the 
theology or no-theology of the day, and cannot pro- 
perly be said to ' hold' what the Creed calls ' the 
Catholic faith.' It does not deny it ; it may not know- 
ingly disbelieve it ; but it gives no signs of actually 
holding it beyond the fact that it treats it with re- 
spect. I will venture to say, that not a country parson 
of them, from year's end to year's end, makes once 


a year what the Catholics call ' an act of faith' in 
that special and very distinctive mystery, contained in 
the clauses of the Athanasian Creed." Then, seeing 
Charles looked rather hurt, he added, "I am not 
speaking of any particular clergyman here or there, 
but of the great majority of them. After the Tory 
party comes the Liberal; which also dislikes the 
Athanasian Creed, as 1 have said. Thirdly, as to 
the Evangelical ; I know you have one of the Nos. 
of the ' Tracts for the Times' about objective faith. 
Now that tract seems to prove that the Evangelical 
party is implicitly Sabellian, and is tending to avow 
that belief. This too has been already the actual 
course of Evangelical doctrine both on the Continent 
and in America. The Protestants of Geneva, Holland, 
Ulster, and Boston have all, I believe, become Uni- 
tarians, or the like. Dr. Adam Clark too, the cele- 
brated Wesleyan, held the distinguishing Sabellian 
tenet, as Doddridge is said to have done before him. 
All this considered, I do think I have made out a 
good case for my original assertion, that at this time 
of day it is a party thing to go out of the way to 
read the Athanasian Creed." " I don't agree with 
you at all," said Charles ; " you say a great deal 
more than you have a warrant to do, and draw 
sweeping conclusions from slender premisses. This, 
at least, is what seems to me. 1 wish too you would 
not so speak of ' making out a case.' It is as if 
these things were mere topics for disputation. And 
I don't like your taking the wrong side ; you are 
rather fond of doing so." " Reding," answered Shef- 
field, " I speak what I think, and ever will do so. I 



will be no party man. I don't attempt, like Vincent, 
to unite opposites. He is of all parties, I am of 
none. T think I see pretty well the hollowness of 
all." " my dear Sheffield," cried Charles in dis- 
tress, " think what you are saying ; you don't mean 
what you say. You are speaking as if you thought 
that belief in the Athanasian Creed was a mere party 
opinion." Sheffield was silent ; then he said, " Well, 
I beg your pardon, if I have said any thing to annoy 
you, or have expressed myself intemperately. But 
surely one has no need to believe what so many 
people either disbelieve or disregard." 

The subject then dropped ; and presently Carlton 
overtook them on the farmer's pony, which he had 


Reding had for near two years put aside his doubts 
about the Articles ; but it was like putting off the 
payment of a bill — a respite, not a deliverance. 
The two conversations which we have been record- 
ing, bringing him to issue on most important sub- 
jects first with one, then with another, of two inti- 
mate friends, who were bound by the Articles as 
well as he, uncomfortably reminded him of his debt 
to the University and Church ; and the nearer ap- 
proach of his examination and degree inflicted on 
him that the time was coming, when he must be 
prepared to discharge it. 



One day, when he was strolling out with Carlton, 
towards the end of the Vacation, he had been led to 
speak of the number of rehgious opinions and parties 
in Oxford, which had so many bad effects, making so 
many talk, so many criticise, and not a few perhaps 
sceptical about truth altogether. Then he said, that 
evil as it was in a place of education, yet he feared it 
was unavoidable, if Carlton's doctrine about parties 
were correct ; for if there was a place where differ- 
ences of religious opinions would shew themselves, 
it would be in a University. " I am far from deny- 
ing it," said Carlton ; " but all systems have their 
defects ; no polity, no theology, no ritual is perfect. 
One only came directly and simply from heaven, the 
Jewish ; and even that was removed because of its 
unprofitableness. This is no derogation from the 
perfection of Divine revelation, for it arises from the 
subject-matter on and through which it operates." 
There was a pause ; then Carlton went on : " It is the 
fault of most young thinkers to be impatient, if they 
do not find perfection in every thing ; they are ' new 
brooms.' " Another pause ; he went on again : " What 
form of religion is less objectionable than ours ? You 
see the inconveniences of your own system, for you 
experience them ; you have not felt, and cannot 
know, those of others." Charles was still silent, and 
went on plucking and chewing leaves from the 
shrubs and bushes through which their path winded. 
At length he said, " I should not like to say it to any 
one but to you, Carlton ; but, do you know, I was 
very uncomfortable about the Articles, going on for 
two years since ; I really could not understand them, 


and their history makes matters worse. I put the 
subject from me altogether ; but now my examination 
and degree are coming on, I must take it up again." 
" You must have been put into the Article-lecture 
early," said Carlton. " Well, perhaps I was not up 
to the subject," answered Charles. " I didn't mean 
that," said Carlton ; " but as to the thing itself, my 
dear fellow, it happens every day, and especially to 
thoughtful people like yourself. It should not an- 
noy you." " But my fidget is," said Charles, " lest 
my difficulties should return, and I should not be 
able to remove them." " You should take all these 
things calmly," said Carlton ; " all things, as I have 
said, have their difficulties. If you wait till every 
thing is as it should be, or might be conceivably, 
you will do nothing, and will lose life. The moral 
world is not an open country ; it is already marked 
and mapped out ; it has its roads. You can't go 
across country ; if you attempt a steeple-chase, you 
will break your neck for your pains. Forms of re- 
ligion are facts ; they have each their history. They 
existed before you were born, and will survive you* 
You must choose, you cannot make." " I know," said 
Reding, " I can't make a religion, nor can I perhaps 
find one better than my own. I don't want to do so ; 
but this is not my difficulty. Take your own image. 
I am jogging along my own road, and lo, a high 
turnpike, fast locked ; and my poor pony can't clear 
it. I don't complain ; but there's the fact, or at least 
may be." " The pony must," answered Carlton ; " or 
if not, there must be some way about ; else what 
is the good of a road ? In religion all roads have 


their obstacles ; one has a strong gate across it, an- 
other goes through a bog. Is no one to go on ? 
Is religion to be at a dead-lock ? Is Christianity 
to die out ? Where else will you go ? Not surely 
to Methodism or Plymouth-brotherism. As to the 
Romish Church, I suspect it has more difficulties 
than we have. You must sacrifice your private 
judgment." " All this is very good," answered 
Charles ; " but what is very expedient, still may be 
very impossible. The finest words about the neces- 
sity of getting home before night-fall will not enable 
my poor little pony to take the gate." " Certainly 
not," said Carlton ; " but if you had a command 
from a benevolent Prince, your own Sovereign and 
Benefactor, to go along the road steadily till even- 
ing, and he would meet you at the end of your 
journey, you would be quite sure that he who had 
appointed the end had also assigned the means. And 
in the difficulty in question, you ought to look out 
for some mode of opening the gate, or some gap in 
the hedge, or some parallel cut, some way or other, 
which would enable you to turn the difficulty." 

Charles said, that somehow he did not like this 
mode of arguing ; it seemed dangerous ; he did not 
see whither it went, where it ended. Presently he 
said abruptly, " Why do you think there are more 
difficulties in the Church of Rome ?" *' Clearly there 
are," answered Carlton ; " if the Articles are a crust, 
is not Pope Pius's Creed a bone?" " I don't know 
Pope Pius's Creed," said Charles; "I know very 
little about the state of the case, certainly. What 
does it say ?" " Oh, it includes infallibility, tran- 


substantiation, saint -worship, and the rest," said 
Carlton ; " I suppose you could not quite subscribe 
these." " It depends," answered Charles slowly, 
"on this, — on what authority they came to me." 
He stopped, and then went on : " Of course I could, 
if they came to me on the same authority as the 
doctrine of the Blessed Trinity comes. Now, the 
Articles come on no authority ; they are the views of 
persons in the sixteenth century ; and it is not clear 
how far they are, or are not, modified by the views 
of the nineteenth. I am obliged, then, to exercise 
my own judgment ; and I candidly declare to you, 
that my judgment is unequal to so great a task. At 
least, this is what troubles me, whenever the subject 
rises in my mind ; for I have put it from me." "Well 
then," said Carlton, " take them on faith." " You 
mean, I suppose," said Charles, " that I must con- 
sider our Church infallible." Carlton felt the diffi- 
culty ; he answered, " No, but you must act as if 
it were infallible, from a sense of duty." Charles 
smiled ; then he looked grave ; he stood still, and 
his eyes fell. " If I am to make a Church infal- 
lible," he said, " if I must give up private judgment, 
if I must act on faith, there is a Church which has a 
greater claim on me than the Church of England." 
" My dear Reding," said Carlton with some emotion, 
" where did you get these notions ?" " I don't know," 
answered Charles ; " somebody has said that they 
were in the air. I have talked to no one, except one 
or two arguments I had with different persons in my 
first year. I have driven the subject from me ; but 
when I once begin, you see it will out." 


They walked on awhile in silence. " Do you 
really mean to say," asked Carlton at length, " that 
it is so difficult to understand and receive the Arti- 
cles ? To me they are quite clear enough, and speak 
the language of common sense." " Well, they seem 
to me," said Reding, " sometimes inconsistent with 
themselves, sometimes with the Prayer-book ; so that 
I am suspicious of them ; I don't know what I am 
signing when I sign, yet I ought to sign ex animo. 
A blind submission I could make ; I cannot make a 
blind declaration." " Give me some instances," said 
Carlton. " For example," said Charles, " they dis- 
tinctly receive the Lutheran doctrine of justification 
by faith only, which the Prayer-book virtually op- 
poses in every one of its Offices. They refer to the 
Homilies as authority, yet the Homilies speak of the 
books of the Apocrypha as inspired, which the Ar- 
ticles implicitly deny. The Articles about Ordina- 
tion are in their spirit contrary to the Ordination 
Service. One Article on the Sacraments speaks 
the doctrine of Melanchthon, another that of Calvin. 
One Article speaks of the Church's authority in 
controversies of faith, yet another makes Scripture 
the ultimate appeal. These are what occur to me 
at the moment." " Surely many of these are but 
verbal difficulties, at very first glance," said Carlton, 
" and all may be surmounted with a little care." 
" On the other hand, it has struck me," continued 
Charles, " that the Church of Rome is undeniably 
consistent in her formularies ; this is the very charge 
some of our writers make upon her, that she is so 
systematic. It may be a hard, iron system, but it is 


consistent." Carlton did not wish to interrupt him, 
thinking it best to hear his whole difficulty; so 
Charles proceeded : " When a system is consistent, 
at least it does not condemn itself. Consistency is 
not truth, but truth is consistency. Now, I am not 
a fit judge whether or not a certain system is true, 
but I may be quite a judge whether it is consistent 
with itself. When an oracle equivocates, it carries 
with it its own condemnation. I almost think there 
is something in Scripture on this subject, comparing 
in this respect the pagan and the inspired prophe- 
cies. And this has struck me too, that St. Paul 
gives this very account of a heretic, that he is ' con- 
demned of himself,' bearing his own condemnation 
on his face. Moreover, I was once in the company 
of Freeborn (I don't know if you are acquainted 
with him), and others of the Evangelical party ; and 
they shewed plainly, if they were to be trusted, that 
Luther and Melanchthon did not agree together on 
the prime point of justification by faith ; a circum- 
stance which had not come into the Article-lecture. 
Also I have read somewhere, or heard in some ser- 
mon, that the ancient heretics always were incon- 
sistent, never could state plainly their meaning, 
much less agree together; and thus, whether they 
would or no, could not help giving to the simple a 
warning of their true character, as if by their rattle." 
Charles stopped ; presently he continued : " This 
too has struck me ; that either there is no prophet 
of the truth on earth, or the Church of Rome is that 
prophet. That there is a prophet still, or apostle, 
or messenger, or teacher, or whatever he is to be 



called, seems evident by our believing in a visible 
Church. Now common sense tells us what a mes- 
senger from God must be ; first, he must not con- 
tradict himself, as I have just been saying. Again, 
a prophet of God can allow of no rival, but de- 
nounces all who make a separate claim, as the pro- 
phets do in Scripture. Now, it is impossible to say 
whether our Church acknowledges or not Lutheran- 
ism in Germany, Calvinism in Switzerland, the Nesto- 
rian and Monophysite bodies in the East. Nor does 
it clearly tell us what view it takes of the Church 
of Rome. The only place where it recognises its 
existence is in the Homilies, and there it speaks of 
it as Antichrist. Nor has the Greek Church any 
intelligible position in Anglican doctrine. On the 
other hand, the Church of Rome has this prima 
facie mark of a prophet, that like a prophet in 
Scripture, it admits no rival, and anathematises all 
doctrine counter to its own. There's another thing. 
A prophet of God is of course at home with his 
message ; he is not helpless and do-nothing in the 
midst of errors and in the war of opinions. He 
knows what has been given him to declare, how far 
it extends ; he can act as an umpire ; he is equal 
to emergencies. This again tells in favour of the 
Church of Rome. As age after age comes, she is 
ever on the alert, questions every new comer, sounds 
the note of alarm, hews down strange doctrine, claims 
and locates and perfects what is new and true. The 
Church of Rome inspires me with confidence ; I feel 
I can trust her. It is another thing whether she is 
true ; I am not pretending now to decide that. But 


I do not feel the like trust in our own Church. I 
love her more than I trust her. She leaves me with- 
out faith. Now you see the state of my mind." He 
fetched a deep sharp sigh, as if he had got a load 
off him. 

" Well," said Carlton, when he had stopped, " this 
is all very pretty theory ; whether it holds in matter 
of fact, is another question. We have been accus- 
tomed hitherto to think Chillingworth right, when 
he talks of Popes against Popes, Councils against 
Councils, and so on. Certainly you will not be al- 
lowed by Protestant controversialists to assume this 
perfect consistency in Romish doctrine. The truth 
is, you have read very little ; and you judge of truth 
not by facts, but by notions ; I mean, you thiuk it 
enough if a notion hangs together ; though you dis- 
avow it, still, in matter of fact, consistency is truth 
to you. Whether facts answer to theories, you can- 
not tell, and you don't inquire. Now I am not well 
read in the subject, but I know enough to be sure 
that Romanists will have more work to prove their 
consistency than you anticipate. For instance, they 
appeal to the Fathers, yet put the Pope above them ; 
they maintain the infallibility of the Church, and 
prove it by Scripture, and then they prove Scripture 
by the Church. They think a General Council in- 
fallible, when, but not before, the Pope has ratified 
it ; Bellarmine, I think, gives a list of General Coun- 
cils which have erred. And I never have been able 
to make out the Romish doctrine of Indulgences." 
Charles thought over this; then he said, "Perhaps 
the case is as you say, that I ought to know the 


matter of fact more exactly before attempting to 
form a judgment on these subjects ; but, my dear 
Carlton, I protest to you, and you may think -with 
what distress I say it, that if the Church of Rome is 
as ambiguous as our own Church, I shall be in the 
way to become a sceptic, on the very ground that I 
shall have no competent authority to tell me what 
to believe. The Ethiopian said, ' How can I know, 
unless some man do teach me?' and St. Paul says, 
' Faith cometh by hearing.' If no one claims my 
faith, how can I exercise it? At least, I shall run 
the risk of becoming a Latitudinarian ; for if I go by 
Scripture only, certainly there is no creed given us 
in Scripture." " Our business," said Carlton, " is 
to make the best of things, not the worst. Do keep 
this in mind ; be on your guard against a strained 
and morbid view of things. Be cheerful, be natural, 
and all will be easy." " You are always kind and 
considerate," said Charles ; " but after all, — I wish 
I could make you see it, — you have not a word to 
say by way of meeting my original difficulty of sub- 
scription. How am I to leap over the wall? It's 
nothing to the purpose that other communions have 
their walls also." 

They now neared home, and concluded their 
walk in silence, each being fully occupied with the 
thoughts which the conversation had suggested. 



The Vacation passed away silently and happily. Day 
succeeded day in quiet routine employments, bring- 
ing insensible but sure accessions to the stock of 
knowledge and to the intellectual proficiency of both 
our students. Historians and orators were read for 
a last time, and laid aside ; sciences were digested ; 
commentaries were run through ; and analyses and 
abstracts completed. It was emphatically a silent 
toil. While others might be steaming from London 
to Bombay or the Havannah, and months in the 
retrospect might look like years, with Reding and 
Sheffield the week had scarcely begun when it was 
found to be ending; and when October came, and 
they saw their Oxford friends again, at first they 
thought they had a good deal to say to them, but 
when they tried, they found it did but concern minute 
points of their own reading and personal matters ; and 
they were reduced to silence, with the wish to speak. 
The season had changed, and reminded them that 
Horsley was a place for summer sojourn, not a dwell- 
ing. There were heavy raw fogs hanging about the 
hills, and storms of wind and rain. The grass no 
longer afforded them a seat ; and when they betook 
themselves indoors, it was discovered that the doors 
and windows did not shut close, and that the chimney 
smoked. Then came those fruits, the funeral feast 
of the year, mulberries and walnuts : the tasteless, 
juiceless walnut; the dark mulberry, juicy but severe, 


and mouldy withal, as gathered not from the tree, 
but from the damp earth. And thus that green spot 
itself weaned them from the love of it. Charles 
looked around him, and rose to depart as a " conviva 
satur." " Edisti satis, tempus abire," seemed written 
upon all. The swallows had taken leave ; the leaves 
were paling; the light broke late, and failed soon. 
The hopes of spring, the peace and calm of summer, 
had given place to the sad realities of autumn. He 
was hurrying to the world, who had been up on the 
mount ; he had lived without jars, without distrac- 
tions, without disappointments ; and he was now to 
take them as his portion. For he was but a child of 
Adam ; Horsley had been but a respite ; and he had 
vividly brought before his memory the sad reverse 
which came upon him two years before — what a 
happy summer — what a forlorn autumn. With these 
thoughts, he put up his books and papers, and turned 
his face towards St. Saviour's. 

Oxford too was not quite what it had been to 
him ; the freshness of his admiration for it was over ; 
he now saw defects where at first all was excellent 
and good ; the romance of places and persons had 
passed away. And there were changes too : of his 
contemporaries, some had already taken their de- 
grees and left ; others were reading in the country ; 
others had gone off to other Colleges on fellowships. 
A host of younger faces had sprung up in hall and 
chapel, and he hardly knew their names. Rooms 
which formerly had been his familiar lounge were 
now tenanted by strangers, who claimed to have 
that right in them which, to his imagination, could 


only attach to those who had possessed them when 
he himself came into residence. The College seemed 
to have deteriorated ; there was a rowing set, which 
had not been there before, a number of boys, and a 
large proportion of snobs. 

But, what was a real trouble to Charles, it got 
clearer and clearer to his apprehension, that his 
intimacy with Sheffield was not quite what it had 
been. They had, indeed, passed the Vacation toge- 
ther, and saw of each other more than ever ; but 
their sympathies in each other were not as strong, 
they had not the same likings and dislikings ; in 
short, they had not such congenial minds as they 
fancied when they were freshmen. There was not 
so much heart in their conversations, and they more 
easily endured to miss each other's company. They 
were both reading for honours — reading hard ; but 
Sheffield's whole heart was in his work, and religion 
was but a secondary matter to him. He had no 
doubts, difficulties, anxieties, sorrows, which much 
affected him. It was not the certainty of faith which 
made a sunshine in his soul, and dried up the mists of 
human weakness ; rather, he had no perceptible need 
within him of that vision of the Unseen which is the 
Christian's life. He was unblemished in his charac- 
ter, exemplary in his conduct ; but he was content 
with what the perishable world gave him. Charles's 
characteristic, perhaps above any thing else, was an 
habitual sense of the Divine Presence ; a sense which, 
of course, did not ensure uninterrupted conformity of 
thought and deed to itself, but still there it was — 
the pillar of the cloud before him and guiding him. 


He felt himself to be God's creature, and responsible 
to Him — God's possession, not his own. He had a 
great wish to succeed in the schools ; a thrill came 
over him when he thought of it ; but ambition was 
not his life ; he could have reconciled himself in a 
few minutes to failure. Thus disposed, the only sub- 
jects on which the two friends freely talked together 
were connected with their common studies. They 
read together, examined each other, used and cor- 
rected each other's papers, and solved each other's 
difficulties. Perhaps it scarcely came home to Shef- 
field, sharp as he was, that there was any flagging of 
their intimacy. Religious controversy had been the 
food of his active intellect when it was novel ; now 
it had lost its interest, and his books took its place. 
But it was far different with Charles ; he had felt in 
terest in religious questions for their own sake ; and 
when he had deprived himself of the pursuit of them, 
it had been a self-denial. Now then, when they 
seemed forced on him again, Sheffield could not help 
him, where he most wanted the assistance of a friend. 
A still more tangible trial was coming on him. 
The reader has to be told, that there was at that 
time a system of espionage prosecuted by various 
well-meaning men, who thought it would be doing 
the University a service to point out such of its 
junior members as were what is called papistically 
inclined. They did not perceive the danger such a 
course involved of disposing young men towards Ca- 
tholicism, by giving them the bad report of it ; and of 
forcing them further, by inflicting on them the incon- 
sistencies of their position. Ideas which would have 


lain dormant or dwindled away in their minds, were 
thus fixed, defined, located within them ; and the fear 
of the world's censure no longer served to deter, 
when it had been actually incurred. When Charles 
attended the tea-party at Freeborn's, he was on his 
trial ; he was introduced not only into a school, but 
into an inquisition ; and since he did not promise to 
be a subject for spiritual impression, he was forth- 
with a subject for spiritual censure. He became a 
marked man in the circles of Capel Hall and St. 
Mark's. His acquaintance with Willis ; the questions 
he had asked at the Article-lecture ; stray remarks at 
wine-parties, — were treasured up, and strengthened 
the case against him. One time, on coming into his 
rooms, he found Freeborn, who had entered to pay 
him a call, prying into his books. A volume of ser- 
mons, of the school of the day, borrowed of a friend 
for the sake of illustrating Aristotle, lay on his table ; 
and in his book-shelves one of the more philosophical 
of the " Tracts for the Times" was stuck in between a 
Hermann De Metris and a Tkucydides. Another day 
his bed-room door was open, and No. 2 of the tea- 
party saw one of Overbeck's sacred prints pinned up 
against the wall. 

Facts like these were, in most cases, delated to 
the Head of the house to which a young man be- 
longed ; who, as a vigilant guardian of the purity of 
his undergraduates' Protestantism, received the infor- 
mation with thankfulness, and perhaps asked the in- 
former to dinner. It cannot be denied that in some 
cases this course of action succeeded in frightening 
and sobering the parties towards whom it was directed. 


White was thus reclaimed to he a devoted son and 
useful minister of the Church of England ; but it was 
a kill-or-cure remedy, and not likely to answer with 
the more noble or the more able minds. What etfect 
it had upon Charles, or whether any, must be deter- 
mined by the sequel ; here it will suffice to relate 
interviews which took place between him and the 
Principal and Vice-Principal of his College in con- 
sequence of it. 


When Reding presented himself to the Vice-Prin- 
cipal, the Rev. Joshua Jennings, to ask for leave to 
reside in lodgings for the two terms previous to his 
examination, he was met with a courteous but deci- 
sive refusal. It took him altogether by surprise ; he 
had considered the request as a mere matter of form. 
He sat half a minute silent, and then rose to take 
his departure. The colour came into his cheek ; it 
was a repulse inflicted only on idle, dissolute men, 
who could not be trusted beyond the eye of the 
Dean of the College. 

The Vice-Principal seemed to expect him to ask 
the reason of his proceeding ; as Charles, in his con- 
fusion, did not seem likely to do so, he condescended 
to open the conversation. It was not meant as any 
reflection, he said, on Mr. Reding' s moral conduct; 
he had ever been a well-conducted young man, and 
had quite borne out the character with which he 


had come from school ; but there were duties to be 
observed towards the community, and its undergra- 
duate portion must be protected from the contagion 
of principles which were too rife at the moment. 
Charles was, if possible, still more surprised, and 
suggested that there must be some misunderstanding, 
if he had been represented to the Vice-Principal as 
connected with any so-called party in the place. •' You 
don't mean to deny that there is a party, Mr. Red- 
ing," answered the College authority, "by that form 
of expression 1" He was a lean pale person, with a 
large hook-nose and spectacles ; and seemed, though 
a liberal in creed, to be really a nursling of that 
early age, when Anabapists fed the fires of Smithfield. 
From his years, practised talent, and position, he 
was well able to brow-beat an unhappy juvenile who 
incurred his displeasure ; and he frequently forgot 
what the poet calls the " villanousness" of such dis- 
plays of power. Charles did not know how to answer 
his question ; and on his silence it was repeated. At 
length he said that really he was not in a condition to 
speak against any one ; and if he spoke of a so-called 
party, it was that he might not seem disrespectful to 
some who might be better men than himself. Mr. 
Vice was silent, but not from being satisfied. " What 
would you call a party, Mr. Reding ? what would be 
your definition of it?" Charles paused to think ; at 
last he said : " Persons who band together on their 
own authority for the maintenance of views of their 
own." " And will you say that these gentlemen 
have not views of their own 1" asked Mr. Jennings. 
Charles assented. 


" What is your view of the Thirty-nine Articles?" 
said the Vice-Principal, abruptly. " My view !" 
thought Charles ; "what can he mean? my view of 
the Articles ! like my opinion of things in general. 
Does he mean my ' view,' whether they are English 
or Latin, long or short, good or bad, expedient or 
not, Catholic or not, Calvinist or Erastian ?" Mean- 
while Jennings kept steadily regarding him, and 
Charles got more and more confused. " I think," 
he said, making a desperate snatch at authoritative 
words, " I think that the Articles ' contain a godly 
and wholesome doctrine, and necessary for these 
times.' " " That is the Second Book of Homilies, 
Mr. Reding, not the Articles. Besides, I want your 
own opinion on the subject." He proceeded, after 
a pause : "What is justification?" " Justification," 
said Charles, repeating the word, and thinking ; then, 
in the words of the Article, he went on: "We are 
accounted righteous before God, but only for the 
merit of our Lord Jesus Christ, by faith, and not 
by our own works and deservings." " Right," said 
Jennings ; " but you have not answered my question. 
What is justification?" This was very hard, for it 
was one of Charles's puzzles what justification was in 
itself, for the Articles do not define it any more than 
faith. He answered to this effect, that the Articles 
did not define it. The Vice-Principal looked dis- 

" Can General Councils err ?" " Yes," answered 
Charles. This was right. " What do Romanists 
say about them ?" "They think they err too." This 
was all wrong, "No," said Jennings, "they think 


them infallible." Charles was silent ; Jennings tried 
to force his decision upon him. At length Charles 
said that " only some General Councils were admitted 
as infallible by the Romanists, and he believed that 
Bellarmine gave a list of General Councils which had 
erred.'' Another pause, and a gathering cloud on 
Jennings' brow. 

He returned to his former subject. " In what 
sense do you understand the Articles, Mr. Reding?" 
he asked. That was more than Charles could tell ; 
he wished very much to know the right sense of 
them ; so he beat about for the received answer. 
" In the sense of Scripture," he said. This was 
true, but nugatory. "Rather," said Mr. Jennings, 
"you understand Scripture in the sense of the Ar- 
ticles." Charles assented for peace-sake. But his 
concession availed not; the Vice-Principal pursued 
his advantage : " They must not interpret each 
other, Mr. Reding, else you revolve in a circle. Let 
me repeat my question. In what sense do you inter- 
pret the Articles ?" "I wish to take them," Reding 
answered, " in the general and received sense of our 
Church, as all our divines and present Bishops take 
them." The Vice-Principal looked pleased. Charles 
could not help being candid, and said in a lower 
tone, as if words of course, " that is, on faith." This 
put all wrong again. Jennings would not allow this ; 
it was a blind, Popish reliance ; it was very well, 
when he first came to the University, before he had 
read the Articles, to take them on trust ; but a young 
man, who had had the advantages of Mr. Reding, 
who had been three years at St. Saviour's College, 


and had attended the Article-lectures, ought to hold 
the received view, not only as being received, but as 
his own, with a free intellectual assent. He went on 
to ask him by what texts he proved the Protestant 
doctrine of justification. Charles gave two or three 
of the usual passages with such success, that the 
Vice-Principal was secretly beginning to relent, when 
unhappily, on asking a last question as a matter of 
course, he received an answer which confirmed all 
his former surmises, and sealed the speaker's fate. 

" What is our Church's doctrine concerning the 

intercession of Saints ?" Charles said that he did 

not recollect that it had expressed any opinion on the 

subject. Jennings bade him think again ; Charles 

thought in vain. " Well, what is your opinion of it, 

Mr. Reding?" Charles, believing it to be an open 

point, thought he should be safe in imitating " our 

Church's" moderation. "There are different opinions 

on the subject," he said : " some persons think they 

intercede for us, others that they do not. It is easy 

to go into extremes ; perhaps better to avoid such 

questions altogether ; better to go by Scripture ; the 

book of Revelation speaks of the intercession of 

Saints, but does not expressly say that they intercede 

for us," &c. &c. Jennings sat upright in his easy 

chair, with indignation mounting into his forehead. 

At length his face became like night. " That is 

your opinion, Mr. Reding." Charles began to be 

frightened. " Please to take up that Prayer-book, 

and turn to the 22d Article. Now, begin reading 

it." " The Romish doctrine," said Charles, — " the 

Romish doctrine concerning purgatory, pardons, 


worshipping and adoration as well of images as of 
relics, and also invocation of Saints" — "Stop 
there," said the Vice-Principal; "read those words 
again." " And also invocation of Saints." "Now, 
Mr. Reding." Charles was puzzled, thought he had 
made some blunder, could not find it, and was silent. 
" Well, Mr. Reding ?" Charles at length said that 
he thought Mr. Jennings had spoken about inter- 
cession. " So I did," he made answer. " And this," 
said Charles, timidly, " speaks of invocation." Jen- 
nings gave a little start in his arm-chair, and slightly 
coloured, " Eh ?" he said ; " give me the book." 
He slowly read the Article, and then cast a cautious 
eye over the page before and after. There was no 
help for it. He began again. " And so, Mr. Red- 
ing, you actually mean to shelter yourself by that 
subtle distinction between invocation and interces- 
sion ; as if Papists did not invoke in order to gain 
the Saints' intercession, and as if the Saints were not 
supposed by them to intercede in answer to invoca- 
tions ? The terms are correlative. Intercession of 
Saints, instead of being an extreme only, as you 
consider, is a Romish abomination. I am ashamed 
of you, Mr, Reding; I am pained and hurt that a 
young man of your promise, of good ability, and 
excellent morals, should be guilty of so gross an eva- 
sion of the authoritative documents of our Church, 
such an outrage upon common sense, so indecent a 
violation of the terms on which alone he was allowed 
to place his name on the books of this society. I 
could not have a clearer proof that your mind has 
been perverted I fear I must use a stronger term, 


debauched, by the sophistries and Jesuitries which 
unhappily have found entrance among us. Good 
morning, Mr. Reding." 

So it was a thing settled : Charles was to be sent 
home, — an endurable banishment. 

Before he went down, he paid a visit of form to 
the old Principal — a worthy man in his generation, 
who before now had raised a congregation in a wild 
part of the country, had instructed the ignorant and 
fed the poor ; but now in the end of his days, falling 
on evil times, was permitted, for inscrutable purposes, 
to give evidence of that evil puritanical leaven which 
was a secret element of his religion. He had been 
kind to Charles hitherto, which made his altered 
manner more distressing to him. "We had hoped," 
he said, " Mr. Reding, that so good a young man as 
you once were, would have gained a place on some 
foundation, and been settled here, and been a useful 
man in his generation, sir ; and a column, a buttress 
of the Church of England, sir. Well, sir, here are 
my best wishes for you, sir. When you come up for 
your Master's degree, sir — no, I think it is your 
Bachelor's — which is it, Mr. Reding, are you yet a 
Bachelor ? oh, I see your gown." Charles said he 
had not yet been into the schools. "Well, sir, when 
you come up to be examined, I should say — to be ex- 
amined — we will hope that in the interval, reflection, 
and study, and absence perhaps from dangerous com- 
panions, will have brought you to a soberer state of 
mind, Mr. Reding." Charles was shocked at the 
language used about him. " Really, sir," he said, " if 
you knew me better, you would feel that I am likely 


neither to receive nor do harm by remaining here 
between this and Easter." " What ! remain here, sir, 
with all the young men about?" asked Dr. Bluett, 
with astonishment, "with all the young men about 
you, sir?" Charles really had not a word to say ; 
he did not know himself in so novel a position. " I 
cannot conceive, sir," he said at last, " why I should 
be unfit company for the gentlemen of the College." 
Dr. Bluett's jaw dropped, and his eyes assumed a 
hollow aspect. " You will corrupt their minds, sir," 
be said, — "you will corrupt their minds." Then he 
added in a sepulchral tone, which came from the 
very depth of his inside, "You will introduce them, 
sir, to some subtle Jesuit — to some subtle Jesuit, 
Mr. Reding." 


Mrs. Reding was by this time settled in the neigh- 
bourhood of old friends in Devonshire ; and there 
Charles spent the winter and early spring with her 
and his three sisters, the eldest of whom was two 
years older than himself. 

" Come, shut your dull books, Charles," said 
Caroline, the youngest, a girl of fourteen ; " make 
way for the tea; I am sure you have read enough. 
You sometimes don't speak a word for an hour to- 
gether ; at least, you might tell us what you are 
reading about." " My dear Cary, you would not be 
much the wiser, if I did," answered Charles; "it is 


Greek history." " Oh," said Caroline, " I know more 
than you think; I have read Goldsmith and good 
part of Rollin, besides Pope's Homer." " Capital," 
said Charles ; " well, I am reading about Pelopidas* 
who was he ?" " Pelopidas ?" answered Caroline, " I 
ought to know. Oh, I recollect, he had an ivory 
shoulder." "Well said, Cary ; but I have not yet 
a distinct idea of him either. Was he a statue, or 
flesh and blood, with this shoulder of his ?" " Oh, 
he was alive ; somebody ate him, I think." " Well, 
was he a god or a man?" said Charles. "Oh, it's 
a mistake of mine," said Caroline ; "he was a god- 
dess, the ivory-footed — no, that was Thetis." "My 
dear Caroline," said her mother, " do not talk so at 
random ; think before you speak ; you know better 
than this." " She has, ma'am," said Charles, " what 
Mr. Jennings would call a ' very inaccurate mind.' " 
"I recollect perfectly now," said Caroline, "he was 
a friend of Epaminondas." "When did he live?" 
asked Charles. Caroline was silent. "Oh, Cary," 
said Eliza, " don't you recollect the memoria technica ?" 
" I never could learn it," said Caroline ; " I hate it." 
"Nor can I," said Mary; "give me good native 
numbers ; they are sweet and kindly, like flowers in 
a bed ; but I don't like your artificial flower-pots." 
" But surely," said Charles, " a memoria technica 
makes you recollect a great many dates which you 
otherwise could not ?" " The crabbed names are 
more difficult even to pronounce than the numbers 
to learn," said Caroline. "That's because you have 
very few dates to get up," said Charles j " but com- 
mon writing is a memoria technica." "That's be- 


yond Caroline," said Mary. "What are words but 
artificial signs for ideas?" said Charles; "they are 
more musical, but as arbitrary. There is no more rea- 
son why the sound ■ hat ' should mean the particular 
thing so called, which we put on our heads, than why 
'abul-distof ' should stand for 1520." "0 my dear 
child," said Mrs. Reding, " how you run on ! Don't 
be paradoxical." " My dear mother," said Charles, 
coming round to the fire, " I don't wish to be para- 
doxical ; it's only a generalisation." " Keep it, then, 
for the schools, my dear ; I dare say it will do you 
good there," continued Mrs. Reding, while she con- 
tinued her hemming ; " poor Caroline will be as 
much put to it in logic as in history." 

"I am in a dilemma," said Charles, as he seated 
himself on a little stool at his mother's feet ; " for 
Cary calls me stupid, if I am silent, and you call 
me paradoxical, if I speak." "Good sense," said 
his mother, "is the golden mean." "And what is 
common sense ?" said Charles. " The silver mean," 
said Eliza. " Well done," said Charles ; " it is small 
change for every hour." "Rather," said Caroline, 
"it is the copper mean, for we want it, like alms 
for the poor, to give away. People are always ask- 
ing me for it. If I can't tell who Isaac's father 
was, Mary says, ' Cary, where's your common 
sense V If I am going out of doors, Eliza runs up, 
' Cary,' she cries, ' you haven't common sense ; your 
shawl's all pinned awry.' And when I ask mamma 
the shortest way across the fields to Dalton, she 
says, ' Use your common sense, my dear.' " " No 
wonder you have so little of it, poor dear child," 


said Charles ; " no bank could stand such a run.'' 
"No such thing," said Mary; "it flows into her 
bank ten times as fast as it comes out. She has 
plenty of it from us ; and what she does with it, no 
one can make out ; she either hoards or she specu- 
lates." " Like the great ocean," said Charles, " which 
receives the rivers, yet is not full." " That's some- 
where in Scripture," said Eliza. "In the Preacher," 
said Charles, and he continued the quotation ; " ' All 
things are full of labour, man cannot utter it ; the 
eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled 
with hearing.' " 

His mother sighed ; " Take my cup, my love," 
she said ; " no more." " I know why Charles is so 
fond of the Preacher," said Mary ; " it's because 
he's tired of reading ; ' much study is a weariness to 
the flesh :' I wish we could help you, dear Charles." 
"My dear boy, I really think you read too much," 
said his mother ; u only think how many hours you 
have been at it to-day. You are always up one or 
two hours before the sun ; and I don't think you 
have had your walk to-day." " It's so dismal walk- 
ing alone, my dear mother ; and as to walking with 
you and my sisters, it's pleasant enough, but no 
exercise." " But, Charlie," said Mary, " that's ab- 
surd of you ; these nice sunny days, which you could 
not expect at this season, are just the time for long 
walks. Why don't you resolve to make straight for 
the plantations, or to mount Hart Hill, or go right 
through Dun Wood and back '?" " Because all 
woods are dun and dingy just now, Mary, and not 
green. It's quite melancholy to see them." " Just 


the finest time of the year," said his mother ; " it's 
universally allowed ; all painters say that the autumn 
is the season to see a landscape in." " All gold and 
russet," said Mary. " It makes me melancholy," 
said Charles. " What ! the beautiful autumn make 
you melancholy ?" asked his mother. " Oh, my dear 
mother, you mean to say that I am paradoxical again ; 
I cannot help it. I like spring ; but autumn saddens 
me." " Charles always says so," said Mary ; " he 
thinks nothing of the rich hues into which the sober 
green changes ; he likes the dull uniform of summer." 
" No, it is not that," said Charles ; " I never saw 
any thing so gorgeous as Magdalen Water-walk, for 
instance, in October ; it is quite wonderful, the va- 
riety of colours. I admire and am astonished ; but 
I cannot love or like it. It is because I can't sepa- 
rate the look of things from what it portends ; that 
rich variety is but the token of disease and death." 
" Surely," said Mary, " colours have their own in- 
trinsic beauty ; we may like them for their own 
sake." "No, no," said Charles, "we always go by 
association ; else why not admire raw beef, or a toad, 
or some other reptiles, which are as beautiful and 
bright as tulips or cherries, yet revolting, because we 
consider what they are, not how they look ?" " What 
next ?" said his mother, looking up from her work ; 
" my dear Charles, you are not serious in comparing 
cherries to raw beef or to toads." " No, my dear 
mother," answered Charles, laughing, " no, I only 
say that they look like them, not are like them." " A 
toad look like a cherry, Charles !" persisted Mrs. 
Reding. "Oh, my dear mother," he answered, "I 


can't explain ; I really have said nothing out of the 
way. Mary does not think so." " But," said Mary, 
" why not associate pleasant thoughts with autumn?" 
" It is impossible," said Charles ; " it is the sick sea- 
son, and the deathbed of Nature. I cannot look with 
pleasure on the decay of the mother of all living. 
The many hues upon the landscape are but the spots 
of dissolution." " This is a strained unnatural view, 
Charles," said Mary ; " shake yourself, and you will 
come to a better mind. Don't you like to see a rich 
sunset? yet the sun is leaving you." Charles was 
for a moment posed ; then he said, " Yes, but there 
was no autumn in Eden ; suns rose and set in Para- 
dise, but the leaves were always green, and did not 
wither. There was a river to feed them. Autumn 
is the • fall.' " 

" So, my dearest Charles," said Mrs. Reding, 
" you don't go out walking these fine days because 
there was no autumn in the garden of Eden ?" '' Oh," 
said Charles, laughing, "it is cruel to bring me so 
to book. What I meant was, that my reading was a 
direct obstacle to walking, and that the fine weather 
did not tempt me to remove it." N I am glad we have 
you here, my dear," said his mother, " for we can 
force you out now and then ; at College I suspect 
you never walk at all." " It's only for a time, ma'am," 
said Charles ; " when my examination is over, I will 
take as long walks as I did with Edward Gandy that 
winter after I left school." "Ah, how merry you 
were then, Charles !" said Mary; "so happy with the 
thoughts of Oxford before you!" "Ah, my dear," 
said Mrs. Reding, "you'll then walk too much, as 


you now walk too little. My good boy, you are so 
earnest about every thing." " It's a shame to find 
fault with him for being diligent," said Mary : " you 
like him to read for honours, I know, mamma ; but 
if he is to get them, he must read a great deal." 
" True, my love," answered Mrs. Reding; "Charles 
is a dear good fellow, I know. How glad we all 
shall be to have him ordained, and settled hi a cu- 
racy !" Charles sighed. " Come, Mary," he said, 
" give us some music, now the urn has gone away. 
Play me that beautiful air of Beethoven, the one I 
call ' The voice of the dead.' " " Oh, Charles, you 
do give such melancholy names to things!" cried 
Mary. " The other day," said Eliza, " we had a 
most beautiful scent wafted across the road as we 
were walking, and he called it 'The ghost of the 
past;' and he says that the sound of the Eolian 
harp is ' remorseful.' " " Now, you'd think all that 
very pretty," said Charles, " if you saw it in a book 
of poems ; but you call it melancholy when I say 
it." "Oh, yes," said Caroline, "because poets never 
mean what they say, and would not be poetical un- 
less they were melancholy." " Well," said Mary, 
" I play to you, Charles, on this one condition, that 
you let me give you some morning a serious lecture 
on that melancholy of yours, which, I assure you, is 
growing on you." 



Charles's perplexities rapidly took a definite form 
on his coming into Devonshire. The very fact of 
his being at home, and not at Oxford where he 
ought to have been, brought them before his mind ; 
and the near prospect of his examination and degree 
justified the consideration of them. No addition 
indeed was made to their substance, as already de- 
scribed ; but they were no longer vague and indis- 
tinct, but thoroughly apprehended by him ; nor did 
he make up his mind that they were unsurmount- 
able, but he saw clearly what it was that had to be 
surmounted. The particular form of argument into 
which they happened to fall, was determined by the 
circumstances in which he found himself at the time, 
and was this, viz. : how he could subscribe the Ar- 
ticles ex animo, without faith, more or less, in his 
Church as the imponent ; and next, how he could 
have faith in her, her history and present condition 
being what they were. 

The fact of these difficulties was a great source 
of distress to Charles. It was aggravated by the 
circumstance that he had no one to talk to, or to 
sympathise with him under them. And it was com- 
pleted by the necessity of carrying about with him a 
secret which he dared not tell to others, yet which 
he foreboded must be told one day. All this was the 
secret of that depression of spirits which his sisters 
had observed in him. 

He was one day sitting thoughtfully over the fire 


with a book in his hand, when Mary entered. " I 
wish you would teach me the art of reading Greek in 
live coals," she said. " Sermons in stones, and good 
in every thing," answered Charles. " You do well 
to liken yourself to the melancholy Jacques," she 
replied. " Not so," said he, " but to the good Duke 
Charles, who was banished to the green forest." "A 
great grievance," answered Mary, " we being the wild 
things with whom you are forced to live. My dear 
Charles," she continued, " I hope the tittle-tattle that 
drove you here, does not still dwell on your mind." 
" Why, it is not very pleasant, Mary, after having 
been on the best terms with the whole College, and 
in particular with the Principal and Jennings, at last 
to be sent down, as a rowing man might be rusticated 
for tandem-driving. You have no notion how strong 
the old Principal was, and Jennings too." " Well, 
my dearest Charles, you must not brood over it," 
said Mary, "as I fear you are doing." " I don't see 
where it is to end," said Charles ; " the Principal 
expressly said that my prospects at the University 
were knocked up. I suppose they would not give me 
a testimonial, if I wished to stand for a fellowship 
any where." " Oh, it is a temporary mistake," said 
Mary ; "I dare say by this time they know better. 
And it's one great gain to have you with us ; we, 
at least, ought to be obliged to them." " I have 
been so very careful, Mary," said Charles ; " I have 
never been to the evening-parties, or to the sermons 
which are talked about in the University. It's quite 
amazing to me what can have put it into their heads. 
At the Article-lecture I now and then asked a ques- 



tion, but it was really because I wished to understand 
and get up the different subjects. Jennings fell on 
me the moment I entered his room. I can call it 
nothing else ; very civil at first in his manner, but 
there was something in his eye before he spoke, which 
told me at once what was coming. It's odd a man 
of such self-command as he, should not better hide 
his feelings ; but I have always been able to see what 
Jennings was thinking about." "Depend on it," 
said his sister, "you will think nothing of it whatever 
this time next year. It will be like a summer-cloud, 
come and gone." " And then it damps me, and in- 
terrupts me in my reading. I fall back thinking of 
it, and cannot give my mind to my books, or exert 
myself. It is very hard." Mary sighed ; " I wish I 
could help you," she said ; " but women can do so 
little. Come, let me take the fretting, and you the 
reading ; that'll be a fair division." " And then my 
dear mother too," he continued ; " what she will 
think of it when it comes to her ears ; and come it 
must." " Nonsense," said Mary, " don't make a 
mountain of a mole-hill. You will go back, take 
your degree, and nobody will be the wiser." " No, 
it can't be so," said Charles, seriously. " What do 
you mean V asked Mary. " These things don't clear 
off in that way," said he ; " it is no summer-cloud ; it 
may turn to rain, for what they know." 

Mary looked at him with some surprise. " I 
mean," he said, " that I have no confidence that they 
will let me take my degree, any more than reside 
there." " That is very absurd," said she ; "it's what 
I meant by brooding over things, and making moun- 


tains of mole-hills." " My sweet Mary," he said, 
affectionately taking her hand, " my only real confi- 
dant and comfort, I would tell you something more* 
if you could bear it." Mary was frightened, and her 
heart beat. " Charles," she said, withdrawing her 
hand, " any pain is less than to see you thus. I see 
too clearly that something is on your mind." Charles 
put his feet on the fender, and looked down. " I 
can't tell you," he said, at length, with vehemence ; 
then, seeing by her face how much he was distressing 
her, he said, half laughing, as if to turn the edge of 
his words, "My dear Mary, when people bear wit- 
ness against one, one can't help fearing that there is, 
perhaps, something to bear witness against." " Impos- 
sible, Charles ! you corrupt other people ! you falsify 
the Prayer-book and Articles ! impossible!" " Mary* 
which do you think would be the best judge whether 
my face was dirty and my coat shabby, you or 1 1 
Well then, perhaps Jennings, or at least common re- 
port, knows more about me than I do myself." " You 
must not speak in this way," said Mary, much hurt ; 
"you really do pain me now. What can you mean?" 
Charles covered his face with his hands, and at length 
said : " It's no good ; you can't assist me here ; I only 
pain you. I ought not to have begun the subject." 
There was a silence. 

" My dearest Charles," said Mary, tenderly, 
" come, I will bear any tbing, and not be annoyed. 
Any thing better than to see you go on in this way. 
But really you frighten me." " Why," he answered, 
" when a number of people tell me that Oxford is not 
my place, not my position, perhaps they are right ; 


perhaps it isn't." " But is that really all ?" she 
said ; " who wants you to lead an Oxford life ? not 
we." "No, but Oxford implies taking a degree — 
taking orders." " Now, my dear Charles, speak out ; 
don't drop hints ; let me know ;" and she sat down 
with a look of great anxiety. "Well" he said, mak- 
ing an effort ; " yet I don't know where to begin ; but 
many things have happened to me, in various ways, to 
shew me that I have not a place, a position, a home, 
that I am not made for, that I am a stranger in, the 
Church of England." There was a- dreadful pause ; 
Mary turned very pale ; then, darting at a conclusion 
with precipitancy, she said quickly : " You mean to 
say, you are going to join the Church of Rome, 
Charles." "No," he said; "it is not so. I mean 
no such thing ; I mean just what I say ; I have told 
you the whole ; I have kept nothing back. It is this, 
and no more, that I feel out of place." " Well then," 
she said, " you must tell me more ; for, to my appre- 
hension, you mean just what I have said, nothing short 
of it." " I can't go through things in order," he said ; 
" but wherever 1 go, whomever I talk with, I feel to 
be another sort of person from what I am. I can't 
convey it to you ; you won't understand me ; but the 
words of the Psalm, 'lam a stranger upon earth,' 
describe what I always feel. No one thinks or feels 
like me. I hear sermons, I talk on religious subjects 
with friends, and every one seems to bear witness 
against me. And now the College bears its witness, 
and sends me down." "Ob, Charles," said Mary, 
" how changed you are !" and tears came into her 
eyes; "you used to be so cheerful, so happy. Yo 


took such pleasure in every one, in every thing. We 
used to laugh and say, ' all Charlie's geese are swans.' 
What has come over you !" She paused, and then 
continued : " Don't you recollect those lines in the 
Christian Year ? I can't repeat them ; we used to 
apply them to you ; something ahout hope or love 
' making all things bright with her own magic smile.' " 
Charles was touched when he was reminded of what 
he had heen three years before ; he said : " I suppose 
it is coming out of shadows into realities." "There 
has been much to sadden you," she added, sighing; 
"and now these nasty books are too much for you. 
Why should you go up for honours ? what's the good 
of it ?" There was a pause again. 

" I wish I could bring home to you," said Charles, 
" the number of intimations, as it were, which have 
been given me of my uncongeniality, as it may be 
called, with things as they are. What perhaps most 
affected me, was a talk I had with Carlton, whom I 
have lately been reading with ; for, if I could not 
agree with him, or rather, if he bore witness against 
me, who could be expected to say a word for me ? 
I cannot bear the pomp and pretence which I see 
every where. I am not speaking against individuals ; 
they are very good persons, I know ; but, really, if 
you saw Oxford as it is ! The Heads with such 
large incomes ; they are indeed very liberal of their 
money, and their wives are often simple self-denying 
persons, as every one says, and do a great deal of 
good in the place ; but I speak of the system. Here 
are ministers of Christ with large incomes, living in 
finely furnished houses, with wives and families, and 


stately butlers and servants in livery, giving dinners 
all in the best style, condescending and gracious, 
waving their hands and mincing their words as if 
they were the cream of the earth, but without any 
thing to make them clergymen but a black coat and 
a white tie. And then Bishops or Deans come, with 
women tucked under their arm ; and they can't enter 
church but a fine powdered man runs first with a 
cushion for them to sit on, and a warm sheepskin to 
keep their feet from the stones." Mary laughed : 
"Well, my dear Charles," she said, "I did not think 
you had seen so much of Bishops, Deans, Professors, 
and Heads of houses at St. Saviour's ; you have kept 
good company." " I have my eyes about me," said 
Charles, " and have had quite opportunities enough ; 
I can't go into particulars." " Well, you have been 
hard on them, I think," said Mary ; " when a poor 
old man has the rheumatism," and she sighed a little, 
"it is hard he mayn't have his feet kept from the 
cold." "Ah, Mary, I can't bring it home to you! 
but you must, please, throw yourself into what I say, 
and not criticise my instances or my terms. What I 
mean is, that there is a worldly air about every thing, 
as unlike as possible the spirit of the Gospels. I don't 
impute to the dons ambition or avarice ; but still, 
what Heads of houses, Fellows, and all of them evi- 
dently put before them as an end is, to enjoy the world 
in the first place, and to serve God in the second. 
Not that they don't make it their final object to get to 
heaven ; but their immediate object is to be comfort- 
able, to marry, to have a fair income, station, and re- 
spectability, a convenient house, a pleasant country, a 


sociable neighbourhood. There is nothing high about 
them. I declare I think the Puseyites are the only 
persons who have high views in the whole place ; I 
should say, the only persons who profess them, for I 
don't know them to speak about them." He thought 
of White. " Well, you are talking of things I don't 
know," said Mary ; " but I can't think all the young 
clever men of the place are looking out for ease and 
comfort ; nor can I believe that in the Church of Rome 
money has always been put to the best of purposes." 
" I said nothing about the Church of Rome," said 
Charles ; " why do you bring in the Church of 
Rome ? that's another thing altogether. What I 
mean is, that there is a worldly smell about Oxford 
which I can't abide. I am not using 'worldly' in 
its worse sense. People are religious and charitable ; 
but — I don't like to mention names — but I know 
various dons, and the notion of evangelical poverty, 
the danger of riches, the giving up all for Christ, 
all those ideas which are first principles in Scripture, 
as I read it, don't seem to enter into their idea of 
religion. I declare, I think that is the reason why 
the Puseyites are so unpopular." " Well, I can't 
see," said Mary, "why you must be disgusted with 
the world, and with your place and duties in it, be- 
cause there are worldly people in it." 

" But I was speaking of Carlton," said Charles ; 
" do you know, good fellow as he is, — and I love, 
admire, and respect him exceedingly, — he actually 
laid it down almost as an axiom, that a clergyman 
of the English Church ought to marry. He said 
that celibacy might be very well in other commu- 


nions, but that a man made himself a fool, and was 
out of joint with the age, who remained single in the 
Church of England." Poor Charles was so serious, 
and the proposition which he related was so mon- 
strous, that Mary, in spite of her real distress, could 
not help laughing out. " I really cannot help it," 
she said ; " well, it really was a most extraordinary 
statement, I confess. But, my dear Charlie, you are 
not afraid that he will carry you off against your will, 
and marry you to some fair lady before you know 
where you are." " Don't talk in that way, Mary," said 
Charles; " I can't bear a joke just now. I mean, Carl- 
ton is so sensible a man, and takes so just a view of 
things, that the conviction flashed on my mind, that the 
Church of England really was what he implied it to be 
— a form of religion very unlike that of the Apostles." 
This sobered Mary indeed. " Alas," she said, 
" we have got upon very different ground now ; not 
what our Church thinks of you, but what you think 
of our Church." There was a pause. " I thought 
this was at the bottom," she said ; " I never could 
believe that a parcel of people, some of whom you 
cared nothing for, telling you that you were not in 
your place, would make you think so, unless you 
first felt it yourself. That's the real truth; and 
then you interpret what others say in your own 
way." Another uncomfortable pause. Then she 
continued : " I see how it will be. When you take 
up a thing, Charles, I know well you don't lay it 
down. No, you have made up your mind already. 
We shall see you a Roman Catholic." " Do you 
then bear witness against me, Mary, as well as the 


rest?" said he sorrowfully. She saw her mistake. 
" No," she answered ; " all I say is, that it rests with 
yourself, not with others. If you have made up 
your mind, there's no help for it. It is not others 
who drive you, who bear witness against you. Dear 
Charles, don't mistake me, and don't deceive your- 
self. You have a strong will." 

At this moment Caroline entered the room. " I 
could not think where you were, Mary," she said ; 
" here Perkins has been crying after you ever so 
long. It's something about dinner ; I don't know 
what. We have hunted high and low, and never 
guessed you were helping Charles at his books." 
Mary gave a deep sigh, and left the room. 


Neither to brother nor to sister had the conver- 
sation been a satisfaction or relief. " I can go no 
where for sympathy," thought Charles ; " dear Mary 
does not understand me more than others. I can't 
bring out what I mean and feel ; and when I attempt 
to do so, my statements and arguments seem absurd 
to myself. It has been a great effort to tell her ; 
and in one sense it is a gain, for it is a trial over. 
Else, I have taken nothing by my move, and might 
as well have held my tongue. I have simply pained 
her, without relieving myself. By the by, she has 
gone off believing about twice as much as the fact. 
I was going to set her right, when Cary came in. 


My only difficulty is about taking orders ; and she 
thinks I am going to be a Roman Catholic. How 
absurd! but women will run on so; give an inch, 
and they take an ell. I know nothing of the Roman 
Catholics. The simple question is, whether I should 
go to the Bar or the Church. I declare I think I 
have made vastly too much of it myself. I ought 
to have begun this way with her ; — I ought to have 
said, ' D'you know, I have serious thoughts of read- 
ing law V I've made a hash of it." 

Poor Mary, on the other hand, was in a confu- 
sion of thought and feeling as painful as it was new 
to her; though for a time household matters and 
necessary duties towards her younger sisters occu- 
pied her mind in a different direction. She had 
been indeed taken at her word ; little had she ex- 
pected what would come on her, when she engaged 
to " take the fretting, while he took the reading." 
She had known what grief was, not so long ago ; 
but not till now had she known anxiety. Charles's 
state of mind was a matter of simple astonishment 
to her. At first it quite frightened and shocked 
her ; it was as if Charles had lost his identity, and 
had turned out some one else. It was like a great 
breach of trust. She had seen there was a good 
deal in the newspapers about the " Oxford party" 
and their doings ; and at different places, where she 
had been on visits, she had heard of churches being 
done up in the new fashion, and clergymen being 
accused, in consequence, of Popery — a charge which 
she had laughed at. But now it was actually brought 
home to her door that there was something in it. 


Yet it was to her incomprehensible, and she hardly 
knew where she was. And that, of all persons in 
the world, her brother, her own Charles, with whom 
she had been one heart and soul all their lives — one 
so cheerful, so religious, so good, so sensible, so cau- 
tious, that he should be the first specimen that crossed 
her path of the new opinions, — it bewildered her. 

And where had he got his notions? — Notions 1 , 
she could not call them notions ; he had nothing to 
say for himself. It was an infatuation ; he, so clever, 
so sharp-sighted, could say nothing better in defence 
of himself than that Mrs. Bishop of Pembroke was 
too pretty, and that old Dr. Stock sat upon a cushion. 
Oh, sad, sad indeed ! How it was he could be so 
insensible to the blessings he gained from his Church 
and had enjoyed all his life ! What could he need ? 
She had no need at all ; going to church was a plea- 
sure to her. She liked to hear the Lessons and the 
Collects, coming round year after year, and marking 
the seasons. The historical books and prophets in 
summer; then the " Stir-up" collect just before Ad- 
vent; the beautiful collects in Advent itself, with 
the Lessons from Isaiah reaching on through Epi- 
phany ; they were quite music to her ear. Then 
the Psalms, varying with every Sunday ; they were 
a perpetual solace to her, ever old yet ever new. 
The occasional additions too, the Athanasian Creed, 
the Benedictus, Deus misereatur, and Omnia opera, 
which her father had been used to read at certain 
great feasts ; and the beautiful Litany. What could 
he want more ? where could he find so much ? Well, 
it was a mystery to her ; and she could only feel 


thankful that she was not exposed to the tempta- 
tions, whatever they were, which had acted on the 
powerful mind of her brother. 

Then, she had anticipated how pleasant it would 
be when Charles was himself a clergyman, and she 
should hear him preach ; when there would be one 
whom she would have a right to ask questions and 
to consult, whenever she wished. This prospect was 
at an end ; she could no longer trust him ; he had 
given a shake to her confidence which it never could 
recover ; it was gone for ever. They were all of 
them women but he ; he was their only stay, now 
that her father had been taken away. What was 
now to become of them 1 To be abandoned by her 
own brother ! oh, how terrible ! 

And how was she to break it to her mother ? 
for broken it must be sooner or later. She could 
not deceive herself; she knew her brother well 
enough to feel sure that, when he had really got 
hold of a thing, he would not let it go again without 
convincing reasons ; and what reasons there could 
be for letting it go, she could not conceive, if there 
could be reasons for taking it up. The taking it up 
baffled all reason, all calculation. "Well, but how 
was her mother to be told of it ? Was it better to 
let her suspect it first, and so break it to her, or to 
wait till the event happened ? The problem was too 
difficult for the present, and she must leave it. 

This was her state for several days, till her fever 
of mind gradually subsided into a state of which a 
dull anxiety was a latent but habitual element, leav- 
ing her as usual at ordinary times, but every now 


and then betraying itself by sudden sharp sighs or 
wanderings of thought. Neither brother nor sister, 
loving each other really as much as ever, had quite 
the same sweetness and evenness of temper as was 
natural to them ; self-command became a duty, and 
the evening circle was duller than before, without 
any one being able to say why. Charles was more 
attentive to his mother ; he no more brought his 
books into the drawing-room, but gave himself to 
her company. He read to them, but he had little 
to talk about ; and Eliza and Caroline both wished 
his stupid examination past and over, that he might 
be restored to his natural liveliness. 

As to Mrs. Reding, she did not observe more 
than that her son was a very hard student, and 
grudged himself a walk or ride, let the day be never 
so fine. She was a mild quiet person, of keen feel- 
ings and precise habits ; not very quick at observa- 
tion; and having lived all her life in the country, 
and till her late loss having scarcely known what 
trouble was, she was singularly unable to compre- 
hend how things could go on in any way but one. 
Charles had not told her the real cause of his spend- 
ing the winter at home, thinking it would be a need- 
less vexation to her ; much less did he contemplate 
harassing her with the recital of his own religious 
difficulties, which were not appreciable by her, and 
issued in no definite result. To his sister he did at- 
tempt an explanation of his former conversation, with 
a view of softening the extreme misgivings which it 
had created in her mind. She received it thankfully, 
and professed to be relieved by it ; but the blow was 


struck, the suspicion was lodged deep in her mind, 
— he was still Charles, dear to her as ever, but she 
never could rid herself of the anticipation which on 
that occasion she had expressed. 


One morning he was told that a gentleman had 
asked for him, and been shewn into the dining- 
room. Descending, he saw the tall slender figure 
of Bateman, now a clergyman, and lately appointed 
curate of a neighbouring parish. Charles had not 
seen him for a year and a half, and shook hands with 
him very warmly, complimenting him on his white 
neckcloth, which somehow, he said, altered him more 
than he could have expected. Batemau's manner 
certainly was altered ; it might be the accident of 
the day, but he did not seem quite at his ease ; it 
might be that he was in a strange house, and was 
likely soon to be precipitated into the company of 
ladies, to which he had never been used. If so, the 
trial was on the point of beginning ; for Charles said 
instantly that he must come and see his mother, and 
of course meant to dine with them; — the sky was 
clear, and there was an excellent footpath between 
Boughton and Melford. Bateman could not do this, 
but he would have the greatest pleasure in being 
introduced to Mrs. Reding ; so he stumbled after 
Charles into the drawing-room, and was soon con- 
versing with her and the young ladies. 

" A charming prospect you have here, ma'am," 


said Bateman, " when you are once inside the house. 
It does not promise outside so extensive a view." 
" No, it is shut in with trees," said Mrs. Reding ; 
" and the brow of the hill changes its direction so 
much that at first I used to think the prospect ought 
to be from the opposite windows." " What is that 
high hill?" said Bateman. "It is Hart Hill," said 
Charles : " there's a Roman camp atop of it." "We 
can see eight steeples from our windows," said Mrs. 
Reding; — "ring the bell for luncheon, my dear." 
"Ah, our ancestors, Mrs. Reding," said Bateman, 
" thought more of building churches than we do ; 
or rather than we have done, I should say, for now 
it is astonishing what efforts are made to add to 
our ecclesiastical structures." " Our ancestors did 
a good deal too," said Mrs. Reding ; " how many 
churches, my dear, were built in London in Queen 
Anne's time 1 St. Martin's was one of them." 
"Fifty," said Eliza. "Fifty were intended," said 
Charles. "Yes, Mrs. Reding," said Bateman; "but 
by ancestors I meant the holy Bishops and other 
members of our Catholic Church previously to the 
Reformation. For, though the Reformation was a 
great blessing," (a glance at Charles,) " yet we must 
not, in justice, forget what was done by English 
Churchmen before it." "Ah, poor creatures," said 
Mrs. Reding, " they did one good thing in building 
churches ; it has saved us much trouble." " Is there 
much church-restoration going on in these parts ?" 
said Bateman, taken rather aback. " My mother has 
but lately come here, like yourself," said Charles: 
"yes, there is some; Barton Church, you know," ap- 


pealing to Mary. " Have your walks extended so far 
as Barton ?" said Mary to Bateman. " Not yet, Miss 
Reding, not yet," answered he ; " of course they are 
destroying the pews." " They are to put in seats," said 
Charles, " and of a very good pattern." " Pews are in- 
tolerable," said Bateman ; " yet the last generation of 
incumbents contentedly bore them ; it is wonderful." 
A not unnatural silence followed this speech. 
Charles broke it by asking if Bateman intended to 
do any thing in the improvement-line at Melford. 
Bateman looked modest. " Nothing of any conse- 
quence," he said ; " some few things were done ; 
but he had a rector of the old school, poor man, 
who was an enemy to that sort of thing." It was 
with some malicious feeling, in consequence of his 
attack on clergymen of the past age, that Charles 
pressed his visitor to give an account of his own 
reforms. " "Why," said Bateman, " much discretion 
is necessary in these matters, or you do as much 
harm as good ; you get into hot water with church- 
wardens and vestries, as well as with old rectors, and 
again with the gentry of the place, and please no 
one. For this reason I have made no attempt to 
introduce the surplice into the pulpit except on the 
great festivals, intending to familiarise my parish- 
ioners to it by little and little. However, I wear a 
scarf or stole, and have taken care that it should be 
two inches broader than usual ; and I always wear 
the cassock in my parish. I hope you approve of 
the cassock, Mrs. Reding?" " It's a very cold dress, 
sir — that's my opinion — when made of silk or bom- 
bazeen ; and very unbecoming too, when worn by 


itself." " Particularly behind," said Charles ; " it is 
quite unshapely." " Oh, I have remedied that," said 
Bateman ; " you have noticed, Miss Reding, I dare 
say, the Bishop's short cassock. It comes to the 
knees, and looks much like a continuation of a waist- 
coat, the straight- cut coat being worn as usual. 
Well, Miss Reding, I have adopted the same plan with 
the long cassock ; I put my coat over it." Mary had 
difficulty to keep from smiling ; Charles laughed out. 
" Impossible, Bateman," he said; " you don't mean 
you wear your tailed French coat over your long 
straight cassock reaching to your ankles?" "Cer- 
tainly," said Bateman gravely : " I thus consult for 
warmth and appearance too ; and all my parishioners 
are sure to know me. I think this a great point, 
Miss Reding; I hear the little boys as I pass say, 
' That's the parson.' " " I'll be bound they do," 
said Charles. " Well," said Mrs. Reding surprised 
out of her propriety, " did one ever hear the like !" 
Bateman looked round at her, startled and frightened. 
" You were going to speak of your improvements 
in your church," "said Mary, wishing to divert his 
attention from her mother. " Ah, true, Miss Reding, 
true," said Bateman, " thank you for reminding me ; 
I have digressed to improvements in my own dress. 
I should have liked to have pulled down the galleries 
and lowered the high pews ; that, however, I could 
not do. So I have lowered the pulpit some six feet. 
Now by doing so, first I give a pattern in my own 
person of the kind of condescension or lowliness to 
which I would persuade my people. But this is not 
all ; for the consequence of lowering the pulpit is, 


that no one in the galleries can see or hear me 
preach ; and this is a bonus on those who are be- 
low." " It's a broad hint, certainly," said Charles. 
" But it's a hint for those below also," continued 
Bateman ; "for no one can see or hear me in the 
pews either, till the sides are lowered." "One thing 
only is wanting besides," said Charles, smiling and 
looking amiable, lest he should be saying too much ; 
" since you are full tall, you must kneel when you 
preach, Bateman, else you will undo your own 
alterations." Bateman looked pleased. " I have 
anticipated you," he said ; " I preach sitting. It 
is more conformable to antiquity and to reason to 
sit than to stand." " \Yith these precautions," said 
Charles, " I really think you might have ventured 
on your surplice n the pulpit every Sunday. Are 
your parishioners contented?" " Oh, not at all, far 
from it," cried Bateman; "but they can do nothing. 
The alteration is so simple." " Any thing besides?" 
asked Charles. " Nothing in the architectural way," 
answered he ; " but one thing more in the way of 
observances. I have fortunately picked up a very 
fair copy of Jewell, black-letter ; and I have placed 
it in church, securing it with a chain to the wall, for 
any poor person who wishes to read it. Our Church 
is emphatically the ' poor man's Church,' Mrs. Red- 
ing." u Well," said Charles to himself, " I'll back 
the old parsons against the young ones any day, if 
this is to be their cut." Then aloud : " Come, you 
must see our garden ; take up your hat, and let's 
have a turn in it. There's a very nice terrace-walk 
at the upper end." Bateman accordingly, having 



been thus trotted out for the amusement of the 
ladies, was now led off again, and was soon in the 
aforesaid terrace-walk, pacing up and down in ear- 
nest conversation with Charles. 

" Reding, my good fellow," said he, " what is 
the meaning of this report concerning you, which is 
every where about?" " I have not heard it," said 
Charles abruptly. " Why it is this," said Bateman ; 
" I wish to approach the subject with as great deli- 
cacy as possible ; don't tell me, if you don't like it, 
or tell me just as much as you like ; yet you will 
excuse an old friend. They say you are going to 
leave the Church of your baptism tor the Church 
of Rome." " Is it widely spread?" asked Charles 
coolly. " Oh, yes ; I heard it in London ; have had 
a letter mentioning it from Oxford ; and a friend of 
mine heard it given out as positive at a visitation- 
dinner in Wales." « So," thought Charles, " you 
are bringing your witness against me, as well as the 
rest." "Well but, my good Reding," said Bateman, 
'.' why are you silent ? is it true ? is it true ?" " What 
true ? that I am a Roman Catholic ? Oh, certainly ; 
don't you understand that's why I am reading so 
hard for the schools ?" said Charles. " Come, be 
serious for a moment, Reding," said Bateman, " do 
be serious. Will you empower me to contradict the 
report, or to negative it to a certain point, or in any 
respect?" " Oh, to be sure," said Charles, " contra- 
dict it by all means, contradict it entirely." " May 
I give it a plain, unqualified, unconditional, catego- 
rical, flat denial?" asked Bateman. " Of course, of 
course." Bateman could not make him out, and bad 


not a dream how he was teasing him. "I don't 
know where to find you," he said. They paced 
down the walk in silence. 

Bateman began again. "You see,'' he said, "it 
would be such a wonderful blindness, it would be so 
utterly inexcusable, in a person like yourself, who 
had known what the Church of England was ; not 
a Dissenter, not an unlettered layman ; but one who 
had been at Oxford, who had come across so many 
excellent men, who had seen what the Church of 
England could be, her grave beauty, her orderly and 
decent activity ; who had seen churches decorated 
as they should be, with candlesticks, ciboriums, fald- 
stools, lecterns, antependiums, piscinas, roodlofts, and 
sedilia ; who, in fact, had seen the Church-system 
carried out, and could desiderate nothing ; — tell me, 
my dear good Reding," taking hold of his button-hole, 
«* what is it you want ? what is it ? name it." " That 
you would take yourself off," Charles would have 
said, had he spoken his mind ; he merely said, how- 
ever, that really he desiderated nothing but to be 
believed when he said that he had no intention of 
leaving his own Church. Bateman was incredulous, 
and thought him close. "Perhaps you are not 
aware," he said, "how much is known of the cir- 
cumstances of your being sent down. The old 
Principal was full of the subject." " What, I sup- 
pose he told people right and left," said Reding. 
" Oh, yes," answered Bateman ; " a friend of mine 
knows him, and happening to call on him soon after 
you went down, had the whole story from him. He 
spoke most kindly of you, and in the highest terms ; 


said that it was deplorable how much your mind 
was warped by the prevalent opinions, and that he 
should not be surprised if it turned out you were a 
Romanist even while you were at St. Saviour's ; any- 
how, that you would be one day a Romanist for cer- 
tain, for that you held that the saints reigning with 
Christ intercede for us in heaven. But, what was 
stronger, when the report got about, Sheffield said 
that he was not surprised at it, that he always pro- 
phesied it." "I am much obliged to him," said Charles. 
" However, you warrant me," said Bateman, " to 
contradict it — so I understand you — to contradict 
it peremptorily ; that's enough for me. It's a great 
relief; it is very satisfactory. Well, I must be go- 
ing." " I don't like to seem to drive you away," 
said Charles, " but really you must be going, if you 
want to get home before nightfall. I hope you don't 
feel lonely or overworked where you are. If you 
are so at any time, don't scruple to drop in to din- 
ner here ; nay, we can take you in for a night, if 
you wish it." 

Bateman thanked him, and they proceeded to 
the hali-door together ; when they were nearly part- 
ing, Bateman stopped and said, " Do you know, I 
should like to lend you some books to read. Let 
me send up to you Bramhall's Works, Thorndike, 
Barrow on the Unity of the Church, and Leslie's 
Dialogues on Romanism. I could name others, but 
content myself with these at present. They perfectly 
settle the matter ; you can't help being convinced. 
I'll not say a word more ; good-bye to you, good- 



Much as Charles loved and prized the company of 
his mother and sisters, he was not sorry to have 
gentlemen's society ; so he accepted with pleasure 
an invitation which Bateman sent him to dine with 
him at Melford. Also he wished to shew Bateman, 
what no protestation could effect, how absurdly ex- 
aggerated were the reports which were circulated 
about him. And as the said Bateman, with all his 
want of common sense, was really a well-informed 
man, and well read in English divines, he thought 
he might incidentally hear something from him which 
he could turn to account. When he got to Melford, 
he found a Mr. Campbell had been asked to meet 
him ; a young Cambridge rector of a neighbouring 
parish, of the same religious sentiments as Bateman, 
and, though a little positive, a man of clear head and 
vigorous mind. 

They had been going over the church ; and the 
conversation at dinner turned on the revival of Gothic 
architecture — an event which gave umnixed satis- 
faction to all parties. The subject would have died 
out, almost as soon as it was started, for want of a 
difference of opinion upon it, had not Bateman hap- 
pily gone on boldly to declare, that, if he had his 
will, there should be no architecture in the English 
churches but Gothic, and no music but Gregorian. 
This was a good thesis, distinctly put, and gave 
scope for a very pretty quarrel. Reding said, that 


all these adjuncts of worship, whether music or ar- 
chitecture, were national ; they were the mode in 
which religious feeling shewed itself in particular 
times and places. He did not mean to say, that the 
outward expression of religion in a country might 
not he guided, but it could not be forced ; that it 
was as preposterous to make people worship in one's 
own way, as to be merry in one's own way. " The 
Greeks," he said, " cut the hair in grief, the Ro- 
mans let it grow; the Orientals veiled their heads 
in worship, the Greeks uncovered them ; Christians 
take off their hats in a church, Mahomedans their 
shoes ; a long veil is a sign of modesty in Europe, 
of immodesty in Asia. You may as well try to 
change the size of people, as their forms of worship. 
Bateman, we must cut you down a foot, and then 
you shall begin your ecclesiastical reforms." " But 
surely, my worthy friend," answered Bateman, "you 
don't mean to say that there is no natural connexion 
between internal feeling and outward expression, so 
that one form is no better than another?" "Far 
from it," answered Cbarles ; " but let those who 
confine their music to Gregorians, put up crucifixes 
in the highways. Each is the representative of a 
particular locality or time." " That's what I say of 
our good friend's short coat and long cassock," said 
Campbell ; " it is a confusion of different times, an- 
cient and modern." " Or of different ideas," said 
Charles, " the cassock Catholic, the coat Protestant." 
" The reverse," said Bateman ; " the cassock is old 
Hooker's Anglican habit; the coat comes from Ca- 
tholic France." " Anyhow, it is what Mr. Reding 


calls a mixture of ideas," said Campbell ; "and that's 
the difficulty I find in uniting Gothic and Grego- 
rians." " Oh, pardon me," said Bateman, " they 
are one idea; they are both eminently Catholic." 
" You can't be more Catholic than Rome, I sup- 
pose," said Campbell; "yet there's no Gothic there." 
" Rome is a peculiar place," said Bateman ; " be- 
sides, my dear friend, if we do but consider that 
Rome has corrupted the pure apostolical doctrine, 
can we wonder that it should have a corrupt archi- 
tecture?" "Why, then, go to it for Gregorians?" 
said Campbell ; " I suspect they are called after Gre- 
gory the First, Bishop of Rome, whom Protestants 
consider the first specimen of Antichrist." " It's 
nothing to us what Protestants think," answered 
Bateman. " Don't let's quarrel about terms," said 
Campbell ; " both you and I think that Rome has 
corrupted the faith, whether she is Antichrist or not. 
You said so yourself just now." " It is true, I did," 
said Bateman ; "but I make a little distinction. The 
Church of Rome has not corrupted the faith, but has 
admitted corruptions among her people." " It won't 
do," answered Campbell; " depend on it, we can't 
stand our ground, unless we feel that we have cause 
to think very painfully of the Church of Rome." 
" Why, what's Rome to us ?" asked Bateman ; " we 
come from the old British Church ; we don't meddle 
with Rome, and we wish Rome not to meddle with 
us, but she will." " Well," said Campbell, " you 
but read a bit the history of the Reformation, and 
you will find that the doctrine that the Pope is 
Antichrist was the life of the movement." " With 


Ultra- Protestants, not with us," answered Bateman. 
" Such Ultra- Protestants as the writers of the Ho- 
milies," said Campbell : " but I say again, I am not 
contending for names ; I only mean, that as that 
doctrine was the life of the Reformation, so a belief, 
which I have and you too, that there is something 
bad, corrupt, perilous in the Church of Rome — that 
there is a spirit of Antichrist living in her, energis- 
ing in her, and ruling her, — is necessary to a man's 
being a good Anglican. You must believe this, or 
you ought to go to Rome." " Impossible ! my dear 
friend," said Bateman ; " all our doctrine has been, 
that Rome and we are sister Churches." " 1 say," 
said Campbell, " that, without this strong repulsion, 
you will not withstand the great claims, the over- 
coming attractions, of the Church of Rome. She is 
our mother, — oh, that word ' mother!' — a mighty 
mother! She opens her arms, — oh, the fragrance 
of that bosom ! She is full of gifts, — I feel it, I 
have long felt it. Why don't I rush into her arms ? 
because I feel that she is ruled by a spirit which is 
not she. But did that distrust of her go from me, 
was that certainty which I have of her corruption 
disproved, I should join her communion to-morrow." 
" This is not very edifying doctrine for Reding," 
thought Bateman. " Oh, my good Campbell," he 
said, " you are paradoxical to-day." " Not a bit of 
it," answered Campbell ; " our Reformers felt that 
the only way in which they could break the tie of 
allegiance which bound us to Rome was the doc- 
trine of her serious corruption. And so it is with 
our divines. If there is one doctrine in which they 


agree, it is that Rome is Antichrist, or an Antichrist. 
Depend upon it, that doctrine is necessary for our 

" I don't quite understand that language," said 
Reding ; " I see it is used in various publications. 
It implies that controversy is a game, and that dis- 
putants are not looking out for truth, but for argu- 
ments." " You must not mistake me, Mr. Reding," 
answered Campbell ; " all I mean is, that you have 
no leave to trifle with your conviction that Rome is 
antichristian, if you think so. For if it is so, it 
is necessary to say so. A poet says, ' Speak gently 
of our sister's fall: no, if it is a fall, we must not 
speak gently of it. At first one says, ' So great a 
Church ! who am I to speak against it V Yes, you 
must, if it is true : ' Tell truth, and shame the devil.' 
Recollect, you don't use your own words ; you are 
sanctioned, protected by all our divines. You must, 
else you can give no sufficient reason for not joining 
the Church of Rome. You must speak out, not 
what you don't think, but what you do think, if you 
think it." " Here's a doctrine !" thought Charles ; 
" why it's putting the controversy into a nut-shell." 
Bateman interposed. " My dear Campbell," he said, 
" you are behind the day. We have given up all that 
abuse against Rome." " Then the party is not so 
clever as I give them credit for being," answered 
Campbell ; " be sure of this, — those who have given 
up their protests against Rome, either are looking 
towards her, or have no eyes at all." " All we say," 
answered Bateman, " is, as I said before, that we 
don't wish to interfere with Rome ; we don't anathe- 


matise Rome, — Rome anathematises ms." " It won't 
do," said Campbell ; '* those who resolve to remain in 
our Church, and are using sweet words of Romanism, 
will be forced back upon their proper ground in 
spite of themselves, and will get no thanks for their 
pains. No man can serve two masters ; either go 
to Rome, or condemn Rome. For me, the Romish 
Church has a great deal in it which I can't get over ; 
and thinking so, much as I admire it in parts, I 
can't help speaking, I can't help it. It would not be 
honest not ; and it would not be consistent." 

" Well, he has ended better than he began," 
thought Bateman ; and he chimed in, "Oh, yes, true, 
too true ; it's painful to see it, but there's a great 
deal in the Church of Rome which no man of plain 
sense, no reader of the Fathers, no Scripture student, 
no true member of the Anglo-Catholic Church can 
possibly stomach." This put a corona on the discus- 
sion ; and the rest of the dinner passed off pleasantly 
indeed, but not very intellectually. 


After dinner, it occurred to them that the subject 
of Gregorians and Gothic had been left in the lurch. 
" How in the world did we get off it ?" asked Charles. 
" Well, at least we have found it," said Bateman ; 
" and I really should like to hear what you have to 
say upon it, Campbell." " Oh, really, Bateman," 


answered he, " I am quite sick of the subject ; every- 
one seems to me to be going into extremes : what's 
the good of arguing about it ? you won't agree with 
me." " I don't see tbat at all," answered Bate- 
man ; " people often think they differ, merely because 
they have not courage to talk to each other." " A 
good remark," thought Charles ; " what a pity that 
Bateman, with so much sense, should have so little 
common sense !" " Well, then," said Campbell, "my 
quarrel with Gothic and Gregorians, when coupled 
together, is, that they are two ideas, not one. Have 
figured music in Gothic churches, keep your Gre- 
gorian for basilicas." " My good Campbell," said 
Bateman, " you seem oblivious that Gregorian chants 
and hymns have always accompanied Gothic aisles, 
Gothic copes, Gothic mitres, and Gothic chalices." 
" Our ancestors did what they could," answered 
Campbell; "they were great in architecture, small 
in music. They could not use what was not yet 
invented. They sang Gregorians because they had 
not Palestrina." " A paradox, a paradox," cried 
Bateman. " Surely there is a close connexion," an- 
swered Campbell, " between the rise and nature of 
the basilica and the Gregorian unison. Both existed 
before Christianity ; both are of Pagan origin ; both 
were afterwards consecrated to the service of the 
Church." " Pardon me," interrupted Bateman ; 
" Gregorians were Jewish, not Pagan." "Be it so, 
for argument-sake," said Campbell; "still, at least 
they were not of Christian origin. Next, the old 
music and the old architecture were both inartificial 
and limited, as methods of exhibiting their respective 


arts. You can't have a large Grecian temple, you 
can't have a long Gregorian mass." " Not a long 
one !" said Bateman ; " why there's poor Willis used 
to complain how tedious the old Gregorian com- 
positions were abroad." " I don't explain myself," 
answered Campbell ; " of course, you may produce 
them to any length, but merely by addition, not by 
carrying on the melody. You can put two together, 
and then have one twice as long as either. But I 
speak of a musical piece ; which must of course be 
the natural development of certain ideas, with one 
part depending on another. In like manner, you 
might make an Ionic temple twice as long and twice 
as wide as the Parthenon ; but you would lose the 
beauty of proportion by doing so. This, then, is 
what I meant to say of the primitive architecture and 
the primitive music, that they soon come to their 
limit ; they soon are exhausted, and can do nothing 
more. If you attempt more, it's like taxing a musi- 
cal instrument beyond its powers." 

"You but try, Bateman," said Reding, " to make 
a bass play quadrilles, and you will see what is meant 
by taxing an instrument." " Well, I have heard 
Lindley play all sorts of quick tunes on his bass," 
said Bateman, " and most wonderful it is." "Won- 
derful's the right word," answered Reding ; " it is 
very wonderful. You say, ' How can he manage it V 
and ' It's very wonderful for a bass ;' but it is not 
pleasant in itself. In like manner, I have always 
felt a disgust when Mr. So-and-so comes forward to 
make his sweet flute bleat and bray like a hautbois ; 
it's forcing the poor thing to do what it was never 


made for." "This is literally true as regards Gre- 
gorian music," said Campbell ; "instruments did not 
exist in primitive times which could execute any 
other. But I speak under correction ; Mr. Reding 
seems to know more about the subject than I do." 
" I have always understood, as you say," answered 
Charles ; " modern music did not come into existence 
till after the powers of the violin became known. 
Corelli himself, who wrote not two hundred years 
ago, hardly ventures on the shift. The piano, again, 
I have heard, has almost given birth to Beethoven." 
" Modern music, then, could not be in ancient times, 
for want of modern instruments," said Campbell ; 
" and in like manner Gothic architecture could not 
exist till vaulting was brought to perfection. Great 
mechanical inventions have taken place, both in 
architecture and in music, since the age of basilicas 
and Gregorians ; and each science has gained by it." 
" It is curious enough," said Reding, " one thing 
which I have been accustomed to say, quite falls in 
with this view of yours. When people, who are not 
musicians, have accused Handel and Beethoven of 
not being simple, I have always said, • Is Gothic 
architecture simple?' A cathedral expresses one 
idea, but is indefinitely varied and elaborated in its 
parts ; so is a symphony or quartett of Beethoven's." 
"Certainly, Bateman, you must tolerate Pagan 
architecture, or you must in consistency exclude 
Pagan or Jewish Gregorians," said Campbell ; " you 
must tolerate figured music, or reprobate tracery 
windows." "And which are you for," asked Bate- 
man ; " Gothic with Handel, or Roman with Grego- 


rians?" " For both in their place," answered Camp- 
hell. " I exceedingly prefer Gothic architecture to 
classical. I think it the one true child and develop- 
ment of Christianity ; but 1 won't, for that reason, 
discard the Pagan style which bas been sanctified 
by eighteen centuries, by the exclusive love of many 
Christian countries, and by the sanction of a host 
of saints. I am for toleration. Give Gothic an as- 
cendency ; be respectful towards classical." 

The conversation slackened. " Much as I like 
modern music," said Charles, "I can't quite go the 
length to which your doctrine would lead me. I 
cannot, indeed, help liking Mozart ; but surely his 
music is not religious." " I have not been speaking 
in defence of particular composers," said Campbell ; 
" figured music may be right, yet Mozart or Bee- 
thoven inadmissible. In like manner, you don't 
suppose, because I tolerate Roman architecture, that 
therefore I like naked cupids to stand for cherubs, 
and sprawling women for the cardinal virtues." He 
paused : " Besides," he added, " as you were saying 
yourself just now, we must consult the genius of our 
country, and the religious associations of our people." 
" Well,' said Bateman, " I think the perfection of 
sacred music is Gregorian set to harmonies ; there 
you have the glorious old chants, and just a little 
modern richness." " And I think it just the worst 
of all," answered Campbell ; " it is a mixture of two 
things, each good in itself, and incongruous toge- 
ther. It's a mixture of the first and second courses 
at table. It's like the architecture of the fagade 
at Milan, half Gothic, half Grecian." " It's what is 


always used, I believe," said Charles. " Oh, yes, we 
must not go against the age," said Campbell ; " it 
would be absurd to do so. I only spoke of what 
was right and wrong on abstract principles ; and, to 
tell the truth, I can't help liking the mixture myself, 
though I can't defend it." 

Bateman rang for tea ; his friends wished to re- 
turn home soon ; it was the month of January, and 
no season for after-dinner strolls. " Well," he said, 
" Campbell, you are more lenient to the age than to 
me ; you yield to the age when it sets a figured bass 
to a Gregorian tone ; but you laugh at me for set- 
ting a coat upon a cassock." " It's no honour to be 
the author of a mixed type," said Campbell. " A 
mixed type ?" said Bateman ; " rather it is a transi- 
tion state." "What are you passing to?" asked 
Charles. " Talking of transitions," said Campbell ; 
" do you know that your man Willis, — I don't know 
his college, he turned Romanist, — is living in my 
parish, and I have hopes he is making a transition 
back again." " Have you seen him ?" said Charles. 
" No ; T have called, but was unfortunate ; he was 
out. He still goes to mass, I find." " Why, where 
does he find a chapel?" asked Bateman. " At Sea- 
ton." " A good seven miles from you," said Charles. 
" Yes," answered Campbell ; " and he walks to and 
fro every Sunday." " That is not like a transition, 
except a physical one," observed Reding. " A per- 
son must go somewhere," answered Campbell ; " I 
suppose he went to church up to the week he joined 
the Romanists." " Very awful, these defections," 
said Bateman ; " but very satisfactory, a melancholy 


satisfaction," with a look at Charles, " that the vie 
tims of the delusion should be at length recovered.' 
" Yes," said Campbell ; " very sad indeed. I an 
afraid we must expect a number more." " Well 
I don't know how to think it," said Charles ; " th( 
hold our Church has on the mind is so powerful ; 
it is such a wrench to leave it, I cannot fancy anj 
party-tie standing against it. Humanly speaking 
there is far, far more to keep them fast than to carrj 
them away." " Yes, if they moved as a party," said 
Campbell ; " but that is not the case. They don'1 
move simply because others move, but, poor fellows, 
because they can't help it. — Bateman, will you lei 
my chaise be brought round? — How can they help 
it?" continued he, standing up over the fire ; " their 
Catholic principles lead them on, and there's nothing 
to repel them back." " Why should not their love 
for their own Church?" asked Bateman; " it is de- 
plorable, unpardonable." " They will keep going 
one after another, as they ripen," said Campbell. 
" Did you hear the report — I did not think much of 
it myself," said Reding — "that Smith Mas moving?" 
"Not impossible," answered Campbell, thoughtfully. 
" Impossible, quite impossible," cried Bateman ; 
" such a triumph to the enemy ; I'll not believe it 
till I see it." " Not impossible," repeated Camp- 
bell, as he buttoned and fitted his greatcoat about 
him; " he has shifted his ground." His carriage 
was announced. " Mr. Reding, I believe I can take 
you part of your way, if you will accept of a seat 
in my pony-chaise." Charles accepted the offer; 
and Bateman was soon deserted by his two guests. 



Campbell put Charles down at about half-way be- 
tween Melford and his home. It was bright moon- 
light ; and, after thanking his new friend for the lift, 
he bounded over the stde at the side of the road, and 
was at once buried in the shade of the copse along 
which his path lay. Soon he came in sight of a tall 
wooden Cross, which, in better days, had been a reli- 
gious emblem, but had served in later times to mark 
the boundary between two contiguous parishes. The 
moon was behind him, and the sacred symbol rose 
awfully in the pale sky, overhanging a pool, which 
was still venerated in the neighbourhood for its re- 
ported miraculous virtue. Charles, to his surprise, 
saw distinctly a man kneeling on the little mound 
out of which the Cross grew ; nay, heard him, for his 
shoulders were bare, and he was using the discipline 
upon them, wlnle he repeated what appeared to be some 
form of devotion. Charles stopped, unwilling to in- 
terrupt, yet not knowing how to pass ; but the stranger 
had caught the sound of feet, and in a few seconds 
vanished from his view. He was overcome with a 
sudden emotion, which he could not control. " 
happy times," he cried, " when faith was one ! 
blessed penitent, whoever you are, who know what 
to believe, and how to gain pardon, and can begin 
where others end ! Here am I, in my twenty-third 
year, uncertain about every thing, because I have no- 
thing to trust." He drew near to the Cross, took off 


his hat, knelt down and kissed the wood, and prayed 
a while, that, whatever might be the consequences, 
whatever the trial, whatever the loss, he might have 
grace to follow on whithersoever God should call 
him. He then rose and turned to the cold well ; he 
took some water in his palm and drank it. He felt 
as if he could have prayed to the Saint who owned 
that pool — St. Thomas the Martyr, he believed — to 
plead for him, and to aid him in his search after the 
true faith ; but something whispered, " It is wrong ;" 
and he checked the wish. So, regaining his hat, he 
passed away, and pursued his homeward path at a 
brisk pace. 

The family had retired for the night, and he went 
up without delay to his bedroom. Passing through 
his study, he found a letter lying on his table, without 
post-mark, which had come for him in his absence. 
He broke the seal ; it was an anonymous paper, and 
began as follows : 

" Questions for one whom it concerns. 

" 1 . What is meant by the One Church of which 
the Creed speaks ?" 

" This is too much for to-night," thought Charles, 
" it is late already ;" and he folded it up again, and 
threw it on his dressing-table. " Some well-meaning 
person, I dare say, who thinks he knows me." He 
wound up his watch, gave a yawn, and put on his 
slippers. " Who can there be in this neighbourhood 
to write it ?" He opened it again. " It's certainly 
a Catholic's writing," he said. His mind glanced to 


the person whom he had seen under the Cross ; per- 
haps it glanced further. He sat down, and began 
reading in extenso : 

" Questions for one whom it concerns. 

1 . What is meant by the One Church of which 

the Creed speaks ? 

2. Is it a generalisation or a thing ? 

3. Does it belong to past history or to the present 

time ? 

4. Does not Scripture speak of it as a kingdom ? 

5. And a kingdom which was to last to the end? 

6. What is a kingdom ? and what is meant when 

Scripture calls the Church a kingdom ? 

7. Is it a visible kingdom, or an invisible ? 

8. Can a kingdom have two governments, and 

these acting in contrary directions ? 

9. Is identity of institutions, opinions, or race, 

sufficient to make two nations one kingdom ? 

10. Is the Episcopal form, the hierarchy, or 
the Apostles' Creed, sufficient to make the 
Churches of Rome and of England one ? 

1 1 . Where there are parts, does not unity require 

union, and a visible unity require a visible 

12. How can two religions be the same, which 
have utterly distinct worships and ideas of 
worship ? 

13. Can two religions be one, if the most sacred 
and peculiar act of worship in the one is 
called 'a blasphemous fable and dangerous 
deceit' in the other? 


14. Has not the One Church of Christ one faith? 

15. Can a Church be Christ's which has not one 

16. Which is contradictory to itself in its docu- 

ments ? 

17. And in different centuries ? 

18. And in its documents contrasted with its 

divines ? 

19. And in its divines and members one with 
another ? 

20. What is the faith of the English Church ? 

21. How many Councils does the English Church 
admit ? 

22. Does the Enghsh Church consider the present 

Nestorian and Jacobite Churches under an 
anathema, or parts of the visible Church ? 

23. Is it necessary, or possible, to believe any 
one but a professed messenger from God ? 

24. Is the English Church, does she claim to be, 
a messenger from God ? 

25. Does she impart the truth, or bid us seek 

26. If she leaves us to seek it, do members of the 
English Church seek it with that earnestness 
which Scripture enjoins? 

27. Is a person safe who lives without faith, 
even though he seem to have hope and cha- 

Charles got very sleepy before he reached the 
" twenty-seventhly." " It won't do," he said ; " I am 
only losing my time. They seem well put ; but they 


must stand over." He put the paper from him, said 
his prayers, and was soon fast asleep. 

Next morning, on waking, the subject of the letter 
came into his mind, and he lay some time thinking 
over it. " Certainly," he said, " I do wish very much 
to be settled either in the English Church, or some- 
where else. I wish I knew what Christianity was ; I 
am ready to be at pains to seek it, and would accept 
it eagerly and thankfully if found. But it's a work 
of time; all the paper-arguments in the world are 
unequal to giving one a view in a moment. There 
must be a process ; they may shorten it, as medicine 
shortens physical processes, but they can't supersede 
its necessity. I recollect how all my religious doubts 
and theories went to flight on my dear father's 
death. They weren't part of me, and could not 
sustain rough weather. Conviction is the eye-sight 
of the mind, not a conclusion from premisses ; God 
works it, and His works are slow. At least so it 
is with me. I can't believe on a sudden ; if I at- 
tempt it, I shall be using words for things, and be 
sure to repent it. Or if not, I shall go right merely 
by hazard. I must move in what seems God's way ; 
I can but put myself on the road ; a higher power 
must overtake me, and carry me forward. At pre- 
sent I have a direct duty upon me, which my dear 
father left me, to take a good class. This is the 
path of duty. I won't put off the inquiry, but I'll let 
it proceed in that path. God can bless my reading 
to my spiritual illumination as well as any thing else. 
Saul sought his uncle's asses, and found a kingdom. 
All in good time. When I have taken my degree? 


the subject will properly come on me." He sighed. 
" My degree ! those odious Articles ! rather, when I 
have passed my examination. Well, it's no good 
lying here ;" and he jumped up and signed himself 
with the Cross. His eye caught the letter. " It's 
well written — better than Willis could write ; it's 
not Willis's. There's something about that Willis I 
don't know. I wonder how he and his mother get 
on together. I don't think he has any sisters." 


Campbell had been much pleased with Charles, 
and his interest in him was not lessened by a hint 
from Bateman, that his allegiance to the English 
Church was in danger. He called on him in no 
long time, asked him to dinner; and when Charles 
had returned his invitation, and Campbell had ac- 
cepted it, the beginning of an acquaintance was 
formed between the rectory at Sutton and the family 
at Boughton, which grew into an intimacy as time 
went on. Campbell was a gentleman, a travelled 
man, of clear head and ardent mind, candid, well- 
read in English divinity, a devoted Anglican, and 
the incumbent of a living so well endowed as almost 
to be a dignity. Mary was pleased at the introduc- 
tion, as bringing her brother under the influence of 
an intellect which he could not make light of ; and, 
as Campbell had a carriage, it was natural that he 


should wish to save Charles the loss of a day's read- 
ing and the trouble of a muddy walk to the rectory 
and back by coming over himself to Boughton. 
Accordingly it so happened that he saw Charles 
twice at his mother's for once that he saw him at 
Sutton. But whatever came of these visits, nothing 
occurred which particularly bears upon the line of 
our narrative ; so let them pass. 

One day Charles called upon Bateman, and, on 
entering the room, was surprised to see him and 
Campbell at luncheon, and in conversation with a 
third person. There was a moment's surprise and 
hesitation on seeing him, before they rose and wel- 
comed him as usual. When he looked at the stranger, 
he felt a slight awkwardness himself, which he could 
not control. It was Willis ; and apparently sub- 
mitted to the process of reconversion. Charles was 
evidently de trop, but there was no help for it ; so 
he shook hands with Willis, and accepted the press- 
ing call of Bateman to seat himself at table, and to 
share their bread and cheese. 

Charles sat down opposite Willis, and for a while 
could not keep his eyes from him. At first he had 
some difficulty in believing he had before him the 
impetuous youth he had known two years and a 
half before. He had always been silent in general 
company ; but in that he was changed, as in every 
thing else. Not that he talked more than was na- 
tural, but he talked freely and easily. The great 
change, however, was in his appearance and manner. 
He had lost his bloom and youthfulness ; his ex- 
pression was sweeter indeed than before, and very 


placid, but there was a thin line down his face on 
each side of his mouth ; his cheeks were wanting in 
fulness, and he had the air of a man of thirty. 
When he entered into conversation, and became 
animated, his former self returned. 

" I suppose we may all admire this cream at this 
season," said Charles, as he helped himself, " for we 
are none of us Devonshire men." " It's not peculiar 
to Devonshire," answered Campbell ; " that is, they 
have it abroad. At Rome there is a sort of cream 
or cheese very like it, and very common." " Will 
butter and cream keep in so warm a climate ?" asked 
Charles ; " I fancied oil was the substitute." " Rome 
is not so warm as you fancy," said Willis, " except 
during the summer." " Oil? so it is," said Camp- 
bell ; " thus we read in Scripture of the multiplica- 
tion of the oil and meal, which seems to answer to 
bread and butter. The oil in Rome is excellent, so 
clear and pale ; you can eat it as milk." " The 
taste, I suppose, is peculiar," observed Charles. 
" Just at first," answered Campbell ; "but one soon 
gets used to it. All such substances, milk, butter, 
cheese, oil, have a particular taste at first, which use 
alone gets over. The rich Guernsey butter is too 
much for strangers, while Russians relish whale-oil. 
Most of our tastes are in a measure artificial." " It 
is certainly so with vegetables," said Willis ; " when 
I was a boy, I could not eat beans, spinach, aspara- 
gus, parsnips, and I think some others." " There- 
fore your hermit's fare is not only the most natural, 
but the only naturally palatable, I suppose, — a crust 
of bread and a draught from the stream," replied 


Campbell. " Or the Clerk of Copmanhurst's dry 
peas," said Charles. " The macaroni and grapes of 
the Neapolitans are as natural and more palatable," 
said Willis. " Rather they are a luxury," said Bate- 
man. " No," answered Campbell, " not a luxury; 
a luxury is in its very idea a something recherche. 
Thus Horace speaks of the 'peregrina lagois.' What 
nature yields sponte sud around you, however deli- 
cious, is no luxury. Wild ducks are no luxury in 
your old neighbourhood, amid your Oxford fens, 
Bateman ; nor grapes at Naples." " Then the old 
women here are luxurious over their sixpenn'rth of 
tea," said Bateman ; " for it comes from China." 
Campbell was posed for an instant. Somehow 
neither he nor Bateman were quite at their ease, 
whether with themselves or with each other ; it 
might be Charles's sudden intrusion, or something 
which had happened before it. Campbell answered 
at length that steamers and railroads were making 
strange changes ; that time and place were vanishing, 
price would soon be the only measure of luxury. 

" This seems the measure also of grasso and ma- 
gro food in Italy," said Willis ; " for, I think there 
are dispensations for butcher's meat in Lent, in con- 
sequence of the dearness of bread and oil." " This 
seems to shew that the age for abstinences and fast- 
ings is past," observed Campbell; "for it's absurd to 
keep Lent on beef and mutton." " Oh, Campbell, 
what are you saying?" cried Bateman; "past! are we 
bound by their lax ways in Italy?" "I do certainly 
think," answered Campbell, " that fasting is unsuit- 
able to this age, in England as well as in Rome." 


" Take care, my fine fellows," thought Charles ; 
" keep your ranks, or you won't secure your pri- 
soner." " What, not fast on Friday I" cried Bate- 
man ; " we always did so most rigidly at Oxford." 
" It does you credit," answered Campbell ; " but I am 
of Cambridge." " But what do you say to the Ru- 
brics and the Calendar?" insisted Bateman. " They 
are not binding," answered Campbell. " They are 
binding," said Bateman. A pause, as between the 
rounds of a boxing-match. Beding interposed : 
" Bateman, cut me, please, a bit more of your capi- 
tal bread — home-made, I suppose ?" " A thousand 
pardons!" said Bateman :— " not binding? — Pass it, 
Willis, to him, if you please. Yes, it comes from a 
farmer next door. I'm glad you like it. I repeat, 
they are binding, Campbell." " An odd sort of 
binding, when they have never bound," answered 
Campbell ; " they have existed two or three hundred 
years ; when were they ever put in force ?" " But 
there they are," said Bateman, " in the Prayer-book." 
" Yes, and there let them he, and never get out of 
it," retorted Campbell ; " there they will stay till the 
end of the story." "Oh, for shame!" cried Bateman ; 
" you should aid your mother in a difficulty, and not 
be like the priest and the Levite." " My mother 
does not wish to be aided," continued Campbell. 
" Oh, how you talk ! What shall I do ? What can 
be done I" cried poor Bateman. " Done ! nothing," 
said Campbell ; " is there no such thing as the de- 
suetude of a law ? Does not a law cease to be bind- 
ing when it is not enforced ? I appeal to Mr. Willis." 
Willis, thus addressed, answered that he was no moral 


theologian, but he had attended some schools ; and 
he believed it was the Catholic rule, that when a law 
had been promulgated, and was not observed by the 
majority, if the legislator knew the state of the case, 
and yet kept silence, he was considered ipso facto 
to revoke it. "What!" said Bateman to Campbell, 
" do you appeal to the Romish Church?" " No," 
answered Campbell ; " I appeal to the whole Ca- 
tholic Church, of which the Church of Rome hap- 
pens in this particular case to be the exponent. It 
is plain common sense, that if a law is not enforced, 
at length it ceases to be binding. Else it would be 
quite a tyranny ; we should not know where we 
were. The Church of Rome does but give expres- 
sion to this common-sense view." "Well then," said 
Bateman, " I will appeal to the Church of Rome too. 
Rome is part of the Catholic Church as well as we : 
since, then, the Romish Church has ever kept up 
fastings, the ordinance is not abolished ; the * greater 
part' of the Catholic Church has always observed 
it." " But it has not," said Campbell ; " it now dis- 
penses with fasts, as you have heard." 

Willis interposed to ask a question. "Do you 
mean, then," he said to Bateman, " that the Church 
of England and the Church of Rome make one 
Church?" " Most certainly," answered Bateman. 
" Is it possible !" said Willis ; " in what sense of the 
word one?" " In every sense," answered Bateman, 
" but that of intercommunion." " That is, I sup- 
pose," said Willis, " they are one, except that they 
have no intercourse with each other." Bateman 
assented. Willis continued : " No intercourse ; that 


is, no social dealings, no consulting or arranging, no 
ordering and obeying, no mutual support ; in short, 
no visible union." Bateman still assented. " Well, 
that is my difficulty," said Willis ; "I can't under- 
stand how two parts can make up one visible body, 
if they are not visibly united ; unity implies union." 
" I don't see that at all," said Bateman ; " I don't see 
that at all. No, Willis, you must not expect I shall 
give that up to you ; it is one of our points. There 
is only one visible Church, and therefore the English 
and Romish Churches are both parts of it." 

Campbell saw clearly that Bateman had got into 
a difficulty, and he came to the rescue in his own 
way. " We must distinguish," he said, " the state 
of the case more exactly. A kingdom may be di- 
vided, it may be distracted by parties, by dissensions, 
yet be still a kingdom. That, I conceive, is the real 
condition of the Church ; in this way the Churches 
of England, Rome, and Greece are one." " I sup- 
pose you will grant," said Wdlis, " that in proportion 
as a rebellion is strong, so is the unity of the king- 
dom threatened ; and if a rebellion is successful, or 
if the parties in a civil war manage to divide the 
power and territory between them, then forthwith, 
instead of one kingdom, we have two. Ten or fifteen 
years since Belgium was part of the kingdom of the 
Netherlands ; I suppose you would not call it part 
of the kingdom now 1 This seems the case of the 
Churches of Rome and England." " Still, a king- 
dom may be in a state of decay," replied Campbell ; 
" consider the case of the Turkish Empire at this 
moment. The union between its separate portions 


is so languid, that each separate Pasha may almost 
be termed a separate sovereign ; still it is one king- 
dom." " The Church, then, at present," said Willis, 
"is a kingdom tending to dissolution." "Certainly 
it is," answered Campbell. " And will ultimately 
fail?" asked Willis. "Certainly," said Campbell; 
" when the end comes, according to our Lord's 
saying, ' When the Son of man cometh, shall He 
find faith on the earth V Just as in the case of the 
chosen people, the sceptre failed from Judah when 
the Shiloh came." " Surely the Church has failed 
already before the end," said Willis, "according to 
the view you take of failing. How can any separa- 
tion be more complete than exists at present between 
Rome, Greece, and England ?" " Tbey might ex- 
communicate each other," said Campbell. " Then 
you are willing," said Willis, " to assign beforehand 
something definite, the occurrence of which will 
constitute a real separation." " Don't do so," said 
Reding to Campbell ; "it is dangerous ; don't commit 
yourself in a moral question ; for then, if the thing 
specified did occur, it would be difficult to see our 
way." " No," said Willis ; " you certainly would be 
in a difficulty ; but you would find your way out, I 
know. In that case you would choose some other 
ultimatum as your test of schism. There would be," 
he added, speaking with some emotion, " ' in the 
lowest depth a lower still.' " 

The concluding words were out of keeping with 
the tone of the conversation hitherto, and fairly 
excited Bateman, who, for some time, had been an 
impatient listener. " That's a dangerous line, Camp- 


bell," he said, "it is indeed; I can't go along with 
you. It will never do to say that the Church is 
failing ; no, it never fails. It is always strong, and 
pure, and perfect, as the Prophets describe it. Look 
at its cathedrals, abbey-churches, and other sanctu- 
aries, these fitly typify it." " My dear Bateman," 
answered Campbell, " I am as willing as you to main- 
tain the fulfilment of the prophecies made to the 
Church, but we must allow the /act that the branches 
of the Church are divided, while we maintain the 
doctrine that the Church should be one." " I don't 
see that at all," answered Bateman ; " no, we need not 
allow it. There's no such thing as Churches, there's 
but one Church every where, and it is not divided. 
It is merely the outward forms, appearances, manifes- 
tations of the Church that are divided. The Church 
is one as much as ever it was. Just as in the Conse- 
crated Bread, the material substance is broken, but the 
Presence of Christ remains one and the same." " That 
will never do," said Campbell ; and he stood up be- 
fore the fire in a state of discomfort. " Nature never 
intended you for a controversialist, my good Bate- 
man," he added to himself. " It is as I thought," 
said Willis ; " Bateman, you are describing an invi- 
sible Church. You hold the indefectibility of the 
invisible Church, not of the visible." 

" They are in a fix," thought Charles, " but I will 
do my best to tow old Bateman out ;" so he began : 
" No," he said, " Bateman only means, that one 
Church presents, in some particular point, a different 
appearance from another ; but it does not follow that, 
in fact, they have not a visible agreement too. All 



difference implies agreement; the English and Ro- 
man Churches agree visibly and differ visibly. Think 
of the different styles of architecture, and you will 
see, Willis, what he means. A church is a church 
all the world over, it is visibly one and the same, 
and yet how different is church from church ! Our 
churches are Gothic, the southern churches are Pal- 
ladian. How different is a basilica from York Ca- 
thedral! yet they visibly agree together. No one 
would mistake either for a mosque or a Jewish tem- 
ple. We may quarrel which is the better style ; one 
likes the basilica, another calls it pagan." " That 
/ do," said Bateman. " A little extreme," said Camp- 
bell, " a little extreme, as usual. The basilica is 
beautiful in its place. There are two things which 
Gothic cannot shew — the line or forest of round 
polished columns, and the graceful dome, circling 
above one's head like the blue heaven itself." 

All parties were glad of this diversion from the 
religious dispute ; so they continued the lighter con- 
versation which had succeeded it with considerable 
earnestness. " I fear I must confess," said Willis, 
" that the churches at Rome do not affect me like 
the Gothic ; I reverence them, I feel awe in them, but 
I love, I feel a sensible pleasure at the sight of the 
Gothic arch." " There are other reasons for that in 
Rome," answered Campbell ; " the churches are so 
unfinished, so untidy. Rome is a city of ruins ; the 
Christian temples are built on ruins, and they them- 
selves are generally dilapidated or decayed ; thus they 
are ruins of ruins." Campbell was on an easier sub- 
ject than that of Anglo-Catholicism, and, no one in- 


terrupting him, he proceeded flowingly : " In Rome 
you have huge high buttresses in the place of columns, 
and these not cased with marble, but of cold white 
plaster or paint. They impart an indescribably for- 
lorn look to the churches." Willis said he often 
wondered what took so many foreigners, that is Pro- 
testants, to Rome ; it was so dreary, so melancholy 
a place ; a number of old, crumbling, shapeless brick 
masses, the ground unlevelled, the straight cause- 
ways fenced by high monotonous walls, the points 
of attraction straggling over broad solitudes, faded 
palaces, trees universally pollarded, streets ankle-deep 
in filth or eyes-and-mouth deep in a cloud of whirl- 
ing dust and straws, the climate most capricious, the 
evening air most perilous. Naples was an earthly 
paradise ; but Rome was a city of faith. To seek 
the shrines it contained was a veritable penance, as 
was fitting. He understood Catholics going there; 
he was perplexed at Protestants. " There is a spell 
about the limina Apostolorum," said Charles ; " St. 
Peter and St. Paul are not there for nothing." 
" There is a more tangible reason," said Campbell ; 
" it is a place where persons of all nations are to be 
found ; no society is so varied as the Roman. You 
go to a ball-room ; your host, whom you bow to in 
the first apartment, is a Frenchman ; as you advance, 
your eye catches Massena's granddaughter in con- 
versation with Mustapha Pasha ; you soon find your- 
self seated between a Yankee charged' affaires and a 
Russian colonel ; and an Englishman is playing the 
fool in front of you." 

Here Campbell looked at his watch, and then at 


Willis, whom lie had driven over to Melford to re- 
turn Bateman's call. It was time for them to be 
going, or they would be overtaken by the evening. 
Bateman, who had remained in a state of great dissa- 
tisfaction since he last spoke, which had not been for a 
quarter of an hour past, did not find himself in spirits 
to try much to detain either them or Reding ; so he 
was speedily left to himself. He drew his chair to 
the fire, and for a while felt nothing more than a 
heavy load of disgust. After a time, however, his 
thoughts began to draw themselves out into series, 
and took the following form : " It's too bad, too bad," 
he said ; " Campbell is a very clever man — far cleverer 
than I am ; a well-read man, too ; but he has no tact, 
no tact. It is deplorable ; Reding's coming was one 
misfortune ; however, we might have got over that, 
we might have even turned it to an advantage ; but 
to use such arguments as he did ! how could he hope 
to convince him 1 he made us both a mere laughing- 
stock. . . . How did he throw off? Oh, he said that 
the Rubrics were not binding. Who ever heard such 
a thing — at least from an Anglo-Catholic ? Why 
pretend to be a good Catholic with such views ? 
Better call himself a Protestant or Erastian at once, 
and one would know where to find him. Such a bad 
impression it must make on Willis ; I saw it did ; he 
could hardly keep from smiling ; but Campbell has 
no tact at all. He goes on, on, his own way, bring- 
ing out his own thoughts, which are very clever, ori- 
ginal certainly, but never considering his company. 
And he's so positive, so knock-me-down ; it is quite 
unpleasant, I don't know how to sit it sometimes. Oh, 



it is a cruel thing this — the effect must he wretched. 
Poor Willis ! I declare I don't think we have moved 
him one inch, I really don't. I fancied at one time 
he was even laughing at me. . . . What was it he 
said afterwards 1 there was something else, I know. 
I recollect ; that the Catholic Church was in ruins, 
had broken to pieces. What a paradox ! who'll be- 
lieve that but he ? I declare I am so vexed I don't 
know what to be at." He jumped up, and began 
walking to and fro. " But all this is because the 
Bishops won't interfere ; one can't say it, that's the 
worst, but they are at the bottom of the evil. They 
have but to put out their little finger, and enforce 
the Rubrics, and then the whole controversy would 
be at an end. . . . I knew there was something else. 
He said we need not fast ! But Cambridge men 
are always peculiar, they always have some whim 
or other ; he ought to have been at Oxford, and we 
should have made a man of him. He has many 
good points, but he runs theories, and rides hobbies, 
and drives consequences, to death." 

Here he was interrupted by his clerk, who told 
him that John Tims had taken his oath that his wife 
should not be churched before the congregation, and 
was half-minded to take his infant to the Methodists 
for baptism ; and his thoughts took a different direc- 



The winter had been on the whole dry and pleasant, 
but in February and March the rains were so pro- 
fuse, and the winds so high, that Bateman saw very 
little of either Charles or Willis. He did not aban- 
don his designs on the latter, but it was an anxious 
question how best to conduct them. As to Camp- 
bell, he was resolved to exclude him from any par- 
ticipation in them ; but he hesitated about Eeding. 
He had found him far less definitely Roman than he 
expected, and he conjectured that, by making him 
his confidant and employing him against "Willis, he 
really might succeed in giving him an Anglican direc- 
tion. Accordingly, he told him of his anxiety to 
restore Wilhs to " the Church of his baptism ;" and, 
not discouraged by Charles's advice to let well alone, 
and that he might succeed in drawing him from 
Rome without reclaiming him to Anglicanism, the 
weather having improved, he asked the two to din- 
ner on one of the later Sundays in Lent. He de- 
termined to make a field-day of it; and with that 
view, he carefully got up some of the most popidar 
works against the Church of Rome. After much 
thought, he determined to direct his attack on some 
of the " practical evils," as he considered them, of 
" Romanism ;" as being more easy of proof than 
points of doctrine and history, in which, too, for what 
he knew, Wilhs might by this time be better read 
than himself. He considered, too, that, if Willis had 


been at all shaken in his new faith when he was 
abroad, it was by the practical exemplification which 
he had had before his eyes, of the issue of its pecu- 
liar doctrines when freely carried out. Moreover, 
to tell the truth, our good friend had not a very clear 
apprehension how much doctrine he held in common 
■with the Church of Rome, or where he was to stop 
in the several details of Pope Pius's Creed ; in con- 
sequence, it was evidently safer to confine his attack 
to matters of practice. 

" You see, Willis," he said, as they sat down to 
table, " I have given you abstinence food, not know- 
ing whether you avail yourself of the dispensation. 
We shall eat meat ourselves ; but don't think we don't 
fast at proper times ; I don't agree with Campbell 
at all ; we don't fast, however, on Sunday. That is 
our rule, and, I take it, a primitive one." Willis 
answered, that he did not know how the primitive 
usage lay, but he supposed that both of them allowed 
that matters of discipline might be altered by the 
proper authority. " Certainly," answered Bateman, 
" so that every thing is done consistently with the 
inspired text of Scripture ;" — he stopped, itching, if 
he could to bring in some great subject, but not 
seeing how. He saw he must rush in medias res ; 
so he added, — " with which inspired text, I presume, 
what one sees in foreign churches is not very con- 
sistent." "What, I suppose you mean antependia, 
rere-dosses, stone-altars, copes, and mitres," said 
Willis, innocently ; " which certainly are not in 
Scripture." "True," said Bateman; "but these, 
though not in Scripture, are not inconsistent with 


Scripture. They are all very right ; but the worship 
of Saints, especially the Blessed Virgin, and of relics, 
the gabbling over prayers in an unknown tongue, 
Indulgences, and the infrequent communions, I sus- 
pect are directly unscriptural." " My dear Bate- 
man," said Willis, " you seem to live in an air of 
controversy ; so it was at Oxford ; there was always 
argument going on in your rooms. Religion is a 
thing to enjoy, not to quarrel about ; give me a slice 
more of that leg of mutton." " Yes, Bateman," said 
Reding, " you must let us enjoy our feed. Willis 
deserves it, for I believe he has had a fair walk to-day; 
Have you not been all the way to Seaton and back ? 
a matter of fourteen miles, and hilly ground ; it can't 
be dry, too, in parts yet." "True," said Bateman ; 
" take a glass of wine, Willis ; it's good Madeira ; an 
aunt of mine sent it me." " He puts us to shame," 
said Charles, "who have stepped into church from 
our bedroom ; he has trudged a pilgrimage to his.'' 
" I'm not saying a word against our dear friend 
Willis," said Bateman ; " it was merely a point on 
which I thought he would agree with me, that 
there were many corruptions of worship in foreign 
Churches." At last, when his silence was observable, 
Willis said, that he supposed that persons who were 
not Catholics could not tell what were corruptions, 
and what not. Here the subject dropped again ; for 
Willis did not seem in a humour, perhaps he was too 
tired, to continue it. So they eat and drank with no- 
thing but very commonplace remarks to season their 
meal withal, till the cloth was removed. The table 
was then shoved back a-bit, and the three young men 


got over the fire, which Bateman made burn brightly. 
Two of them at least had deserved some relaxation, 
and they were the two who were to be opponent and 
respondent in the approaching argument ; one had 
had a long walk ; the other had had two full services, 
a baptism, and a funeral. The armistice continued 
a good quarter of an hour, which Charles and Willis 
spent in easy conversation ; till Bateman, who had 
been priming himself the whde with his controversial 
points, found himself ready for the assault, and 
opened it in form. 

" Come, my dear Willis," he said ; " I can't let 
you off so ; I am sure what you saw abroad scan- 
dalised you." This was almost rudely put : Willis 
said that, had he been a Protestant, he might have 
been easily shocked ; but he was a Catholic ; and he 
drew an almost imperceptible sigh. Besides, had he 
had a temptation to be shocked, he should have re- 
collected that he was in a Church, which in all greater 
matters could not err. He had not come to the 
Church to criticise, he said, but to learn. " I don't 
know," he said, " what is meant by saying that we 
ought to have faith, that faith is a grace, that faith 
is the means of our salvation, if there is nothing 
to exercise it. Faith goes against sight ; well, then, 
unless there are sights which offend you, there is 
nothing for it to go against." Bateman called this a 
paradox ; if so, he said, why don't we become Ma- 
hometans 1 we should have enough to believe then. 
" Why, just consider," said Willis ; " supposing 
your friend, an honourable man, is accused of theft, 
and appearances are against him, would you at once 


admit the charge ? It would be a fair trial of your 
faith in him ; and if he were able in the event satis- 
factorily to rebut it, I don't think he would thank 
you, should you have waited for his explanation before 
you took his part, instead of knowing him too well 
to suspect it. If, then, I come to the Church with 
faith in her, whatever I see there, even if it surprises 
me, is but a trial of my faitb." " That is true," 
said Charles ; " but there must be some ground for 
faith ; we do not believe without reason ; and the 
question is, whether what the Church does, as in 
worship, is not a fair matter to form a judgment 
upon, for or against." " A Catholic," said Willis, 
" as I was when I was abroad, has already found his 
grounds, for he believes ; but for one who has not — 
I mean a Protestant — I certainly consider it is very 
uncertain whether he will take the view of Catholic 
worship which he ought to take. It may easily hap- 
pen that he will not understand it." " Yet persons 
have before now been converted by the sight of Ca- 
tholic worship," said Reding. " Certainly," answered 
Willis ; " God works in a thousand ways ; there is 
much in Catholic worship to strike a Protestant, but 
there is much which will perplex him ; for instance, 
what Bateman has alluded to, our devotion to the 
Blessed Virgin." 

" Surely," said Bateman, " this is a plain matter ; 
it is quite impossible that the worship paid by Roman 
Catholics to the Blessed Mary should not interfere 
with the supreme adoration due to the Creator 
alone." " This is just an instance in point," said 
Willis ; " you see you are judging a priori ; you 


know nothing of the state of the case from experi- 
ence, hut you say, ' It must be ; it can't be otherwise.' 
This is the way a Protestant judges, and comes to 
one conclusion ; a Catholic, who acts, and does not 
speculate, feels the truth of the contrary." " Some 
things," said Bateman, "are so like axioms, as to 
supersede trial. On the other hand, familiarity is 
very likely to hide from people the real evil of cer- 
tain practices." ** How strange it is," answered 
Willis, " that you don't perceive that this is the very 
argument which various sects urge against you An- 
glicans ! For instance, the Unitarian says that the 
doctrine of the Atonement must lead to our looking 
at the Father, not as a God of love, but of vengeance 
only; and he calls the doctrine of eternal punish- 
ment immoral. And so, the Wesleyan or Baptist 
declares that it is an absurdity to suppose any one 
can hold the doctrine of baptismal regeneration, and 
really be spiritual ; that the doctrine must have a 
numbing effect on the mind, and destroy its single 
reliance on the atonement of Christ. I will take 
another instance : many a good Catholic, who never 
came across Anglicans, is as utterly unable to realise 
your position as you are to realise his. He cannot 
make out how you can be so illogical as not to go 
forward or backward ; nay he pronounces your pro- 
fessed state of mind impossible ; he does not believe 
in its existence. I may deplore your state ; I may 
think you illogical and worse ; but I know it is a 
state which does exist. As, then, I admit that a 
person can profess one Catholic Church, yet without 
believing that the Roman Communion is it ; so I put 


it to you, even as an argumentum ad hominem, whe- 
ther you ought not to helieve that we can honour 
our Blessed Lady as the first of creatures, without 
interfering with the honour due to God. At most, 
you ought to call us only illogical, you ought not to 
deny that we do what we say we do." "I make 
a distinction," said Bateman : " it is quite possible, 
I fully grant, for an educated Romanist to distin- 
guish between the devotion paid by him to the 
Blessed Virgin, and the worship of God ; I only say 
that the multitude will not distinguish." " I know 
you say so," answered Willis ; " and still, I repeat, 
not from experience, but on an a priori ground. You 
say, not ' it is so,' but ' it must be so.' " 

There was a pause in the conversation, and then 
Bateman recommenced it. *' You may give us some 
trouble," said he, laughing, " but we are resolved to 
have you back, my good Willis. Now consider, you 
are a lover of truth : is that Church from heaven 
which tells untruths V Willis laughed too ; " We 
must define the words truth and untruth," he said ; 
" but, subject to that definition, I have no hesitation 
in enunciating the truism, that a Church is not from 
heaven which tells untruths." " Of course, you can't 
deny the proposition," said Bateman ; " well then, 
is it not quite certain that in Rome itself there are 
relics which all learned men now give up, and which 
yet are venerated as relics ? For instance, Campbell 
tells me that the reputed heads of St. Peter and 
St. Paul, in some great Roman basilica, are certainly 
not the heads of the Apostles, because the head of 
St. Paul was found with his body, after the fire at 


his church some years since." " I don't know about 
the particular instance," answered Willis ; " but you 
are opening a large question, which cannot be set- 
tled in a few words. If I must speak, I should say 
this: I should begin with the assumption that the 
existence of relics is npt improbable ; do you grant 
that P" " I grant nothing," said Bateman ; " but 
go on." " Why you have plenty of heathen relics, 
which you admit. What is Pompeii, and all that is 
found there, but one vast heathen relic ? why should 
there not be Christian relics in Rome and elsewhere, 
as well as pagan ?" " Of course, of course," said 
Bateman. " Well, and relics may be identified. 
You have the tomb of the Scipios, with their names 
on them. Did you find ashes in one of them, I sup- 
pose you would be pretty certain that they were the 
ashes of a Scipio." " To the point," cried Bateman, 
" quicker." " St. Peter," continued Willis, "speaks 
of David, ' whose sepulchre is with you unto this 
day.' Therefore it's nothing wonderful that a re- 
ligious relic should be preserved eleven hundred 
years, and identified to be such, when a nation 
makes a point of preserving it." " This is beating 
about the bush," cried Bateman impatiently ; " get 
on quicker." " Let me go on my own way," said 
Willis ; " then there is nothing improbable, consider- 
ing Christians have always been very careful about 
the memorials of sacred things — " " You've not 
proved that," said Bateman, feariDg that some ma- 
noeuvre, he could not tell what, was in progress. 
" Well," said Willis, " you don't doubt it, I suppose, 
at least from the fourth century, when Saint Helena 


brought from the Holy Land the memorials of our 
Lord's passion, and lodged them at Rome in the 
Basilica, which she thereupon called Santa Croce. 
As to the previous times of persecution, Christians 
of course had fewer opportunities of shewing a simi- 
lar devotion, and historical records are less copious ; 
yet, in spite of this, its existence is as certain as 
any fact of history. They collected the bones of St. 
Polycarp, the immediate disciple of St. John, after 
he was burnt ; as of St. Ignatius before him, after 
his exposure to the beasts ; and so in like manner 
the bones or blood of all the martyrs. No one 
doubts it ; I never heard of any one who did. So 
the disciples took up the Baptist's body, — it would 
have been strange if they had not, — and buried it 
' in the sepulchre,' as the Evangelist says, speaking 
of it as known. Now, why should they not in like 
manner, and even with greater reason, have rescued 
the bodies of St. Peter and St. Paul, if it were only 
for decent burial ? Is it then wonderful, if the bo- 
dies were rescued, that they should be afterwards 
preserved?" "But they can't be in two places at 
once," said Bateman. " But hear me," answered 
Willis ; "I say then, if there is a tradition that in a 
certain place there is a relic of an apostle, there is 
at first sigbt a probability that it is there ; the pre- 
sumption is in its favour. Can you deny it ? Well, 
if the same rehc is reported to be in two places, 
then one or the other tradition is erroneous, and the 
primd facie force of both traditions is weakened ; 
but I should not actually discard either at once ; 
each has its force still, though neither so great a 


force. Now, suppose there are circumstances which 
confirm the one, the other is weakened still further, 
and at length the probability of its truth may be- 
come evanescent ; and when a fair interval has 
passed, and there is no change of evidence in its 
favour, then it is at length given up. But all this 
is a work of time ; meanwhile, it is not a bit more 
of an objection to the doctrine and practice of relic- 
veneration that a body is said to lie in two places, 
than to general history that Charles the First was 
reported by some authorities to be buried at Wind- 
sor, by others at Westminster ; which question was 
decided just before our times. It is a question of 
evidence, and must be treated as such." " But if 
St. Paul's head was found under his own church," 
said Bateman, " it's pretty clear it is not preserved 
at the other basilica." " True," answered Willis ; 
" but grave questions of this kind cannot be decided 
in a moment. I don't know myself the circumstances 
of the case, and do but take your account of it. It 
has to be proved, then, that it was St. Paul's head 
which was found with his body ; for, since he was 
beheaded, it would not be attached to it. This is 
one question, and others would arise. It is not easy 
to settle a question of history. Questions which 
seem settled revive. It is very well for secular 
historians to give up a tradition or testimony at 
once, and for a generation to oh-oh it ; but the 
Church cannot do so ; she has a religious respon- 
sibility, and must move slowly. Take the chance 
of its turning out that the heads at St. John Lateran 
were, after all, those of the two Apostles, and that 


she liad cast them aside. Questions, I say, revive. 
Did not Walpole prove to admiration that the two 
little princes had a place in the procession at King 
Kichard's coronation ? yet, some years ago, two ske- 
letons of boys were found in the Tower at the very 
place where the children of Edward were said to 
have been murdered and buried by the Duke of 
Gloucester. I speak from memory, but the general 
fact which I am illustrating is undeniable. Usshen 
Pearson, and Voss proved that St. Ignatius's shorter 
Epistles were genuine ; and now, after the lapse of 
two centuries, the question is at least plausibly 
mooted again." 

There was another pause, while Bateman thought 
over his facts and arguments, but nothing was forth- 
coming at the moment. Willis continued: "You 
must consider also that reputed relics, such as you 
have mentioned, are generally in the custody of re- 
ligious bodies, who are naturally very jealous of 
attempts to prove them spurious, and, with a par- 
donable esprit de corps, defend them with all their 
might, and oppose obstacles in the way of an ad- 
verse decision ; just as your own society defends, most 
worthily, the fair fame of your foundress Queen 
Boadicea. Were the case given against her by every 
tribunal in the land, your valiant and loyal Head 
would not abandon her ; it would break his mag- 
nanimous heart ; he would die in her service as a 
good knight. Both from religious duty, then, and 
from human feeling, it is a very arduous thing to get 
a received relic disowned." " Well," said Bateman, 
" to my poor judgment it does seem a dishonesty to 


keep up inscriptions, for instance, which every one 
knows not to be true." " My dear Bateman, that 
is begging the question," said Willis ; " every body 
does not know it ; it is a point in course of settle- 
ment, but not settled ; you may say that individuals 
have settled it, or it may be settled, but it is not 
settled yet. Parallel cases happen frequently in 
civil matters, and no one speaks harshly of existing 
individuals or bodies in consequence. Till lately 
the Monument in London bore an inscription to the 
effect that London had been burned by us poor 
Papists. A hundred years ago, Pope, the poet, had 
called the ' column' ' a tall bully,' which ' lifts its 
head and lies.' Yet the inscription was not removed 
till a few years since — I believe when the Monument 
was repaired. That was an opportunity for erasing 
a calumny which, till then, had not been definitely 
pronounced to be such, and not pronounced, in de- 
ference to the primd facie authority of a statement 
contemporaneous with the calamity which it recorded. 
There is never a point of time at which you can say, 
' The tradition is now disproved.' When a received 
belief has been apparently exposed, the question lies 
dormant, for the opportunity of fresh arguments ; 
when none appear, then at length an accident, such 
as the repair of a building, dispatches it." 

"We have somehow got off the subject," thought 
Bateman ; and he sat fidgetting about to find the 
thread of his argument. Reding put in an objection ; 
he said that no one knew or cared about the inscrip- 
tion on the Monument, but religious veneration was 
paid to the two heads at St. John Lateran. " Right," 


said Bateman, " that's just what I meant to say." 
" Well," answered Willis, " as to the particular case, 
mind, I am taking your account of it, for I don't 
profess to know how the matter lies. But let us 
consider the extent of the mistake. There is no 
doubt in the world that at least they are the heads 
of martyrs ; the only question is this, and no more, 
whether they are the very heads of the two Apostles. 
From time immemorial they have been preserved 
upon or under the altar as the heads of saints or 
martyrs ; and it requires to know very little of 
Christian antiquities to be perfectly certain that 
they really are saintly relics, even though unknown. 
Hence the sole mistake is, that Catholics have vene- 
rated, what ought to be venerated any how, under a 
wrong name ; perhaps have expected miracles, which 
they had a right to expect, and have experienced 
them, as they might well experience them, because 
they were the relics of saints, though they were in 
error as to what saints. This surely is no great 
matter." " You have made three assumptions," said 
Bateman ; " first, that none but the relics of saints 
have been placed under altars ; secondly, that these 
relics were always there ; thirdly — thirdly — I know 
there was a third — let me see" — " Most true," 
said Willis, interrupting him, " and I will help you 
to some others. I have assumed that there are 
Christians in the world called Catholics : again, that 
they think it right to venerate relics : but, my dear 
Bateman, these were the grounds, and not the point 
of our argument ; and if they are to be questioned, 
it must be in a distinct dispute : but I really think 

288 tOSS AND GAIN". 

we have had enough of disputation." " Yes, Bate- 
man," said Charles ; " it is getting late. I must think 
of returning. Give us some tea, and let us be gone." 
" Go home ?" cried Bateman ; " why, we have just 
done dinner, and done nothing else as yet ; I had 
a great deal to say." However, he rang the bell for 
tea, and had the table cleared. 


The conversation flagged ; Bateman was again busy 
with his memory ; and he was getting impatient too ; 
time was slipping away, and no blow struck ; more- 
over, Willis was beginning to gape, and Charles 
seemed impatient to be released. " These Romanists 
put things so plausibly," he said to himself, " but 
very unfairly, most unfairly ; one ought to be up to 
their dodges. I dare say, if the truth were known, 
Willis has had lessons ; he looks so demure ; I dare 
say he is keeping back a great deal, and playing upon 
my ignorance. Who knows ? perhaps he's a con- 
cealed Jesuit." It was an awful thought, and sus- 
pended the course of his reflections some seconds. 
" I wonder what he does really think ; it's so diffi- 
cult to get at the bottom of them ; they won't tell 
tales, and they are under obedience ; one never 
knows when to believe them. I suspect he has been 
wofully disappointed with Romanism ; he looks so 
thin ; but of course he won't say so ; it hurts a man's 


pride, and he likes to be consistent ; he doesn't like 
to be laughed at, and so he makes the best of things. 
I wish I knew how to treat him ; I was wrong in 
having Reding here ; of course Willis would not be 
confidential before a third person. He's like the fox 
that lost his tail. It was bad tact in me ; I see it 
now ; what a thing it is to have tact ! it requires very 
delicate tact. There are so many things I wished to 
say, about Indulgences, about their so seldom com- 
municating ; I think I must ask him about the Mass." 
So, after fidgetting a good deal within, while he was 
ostensibly employed in making tea, he commenced 
his last assault. 

" Well, we shall have you back again among U3 
by next Christmas, Willis," he said; "I can't give 
you greater law ; I'm certain of it ; it takes time, but 
slow and sure. What a joyful time it will be ! I 
can't tell what keeps you ; you are doing nothing ; 
you are flung into a corner ; you are wasting life. 
What keeps you?" Willis looked odd; then he 
simply answered, " Grace." Bateman was startled, 
but recovered himself; "Heaven forbid," he said, 
" that I should treat these things lightly, or interfere 
with you unduly. I know, my dear friend, what a 
serious fellow you are ; but do tell me, just tell me, 
how can you justify the Mass, as it is performed 
abroad ; how can it be called a ' reasonable service,' 
when all parties conspire to gabble it over, as if it 
mattered not a jot who attended to it, or even under- 
stood it? Speak, man, speak," he added, gently 
shaking him by the shoulder. " These are such diffi- 
cult questions," answered Willis ; "must I speak ? Such 



difficult questions," he continued, rising into a more 
animated manner, and kindling as he went on ; "I 
mean, people view them so differently ; it is so diffi- 
cult to convey to one person the idea of another. 
The idea of worship is different in the Catholic 
Church from the idea of it in your Church ; for, 
in truth, the religions are different. Don't deceive 
yourself, my dear Bateman," he said tenderly, " it 
is not that ours is your religion carried a little far- 
ther, — a little too far, as you would say. No, they 
differ in kind, not in degree ; ours is one religion, 
yours another. And when the time comes, and come 
it will, for you, alien as you are now, to submit 
yourself to the gracious yoke of Christ, then, my 
dearest Bateman, it will he faith which will enable 
you to bear the ways and usages of Catholics, which 
else might perhaps startle you. Else, the habits of 
years, the associations in your mind of a certain out- 
ward behaviour with real inward acts of devotion, 
might embarrass you, when you had to conform your- 
self to other habits, and to create for yourself other 
associations. But this faith, of which I speak, the 
great gift of God, will enable you in that day to 
overcome yourself, and to submit, as your judgment, 
your will, your reason, your affections, so your tastes 
and likings, to the rule and usage of the Church. 
Ah, that faith should be necessary in such a matter, 
and that what is so natural and becoming under the 
circumstances, should have need of an explanation ! 
I declare, to me," he said, and he clasped his hands 
on his knees, and looked forward as if soliloquising ; 
"to me nothing is so consoling, so piercing, so thrill- 



ing, so overcoming as the Mass, said as it is among 
us. I could attend Masses for ever, and not be tired. 
It is not a mere form of words, — it is a great action, 
the greatest action that can be on earth. It is, not 
the invocation merely, but, if I dare use the word, 
the evocation of the Eternal. He becomes present 
on the altar in flesh and blood, before whom angels 
bow and devils tremble. This is that awful event 
which is the end, and is the interpretation, of every 
part of the solemnity. Words are necessary, but as 
means, not as ends ; they are not mere addresses to 
the throne of grace, they are instruments of what is 
far higher, of consecration, of sacrifice. They hurry 
on, as if impatient to fulfil their mission. Quickly 
they go, the whole is quick ; for they are all parts of 
one integral action. Quickly they go ; for they are 
awful words of sacrifice, they are a work too great 
to delay upon; as when it was said in the begin- 
ning, ' What thou doest, do quickly.' Quickly they 
pass ; for the Lord Jesus goes with them, as He passed 
along the lake in the days of His flesh, quickly call- 
ing first one and then another. Quickly they pass ; 
because as the lightning which shineth from one part 
of the heaven unto the other, so is the coming of the 
Son of man. Quickly they pass ; for they are the 
words of the Lord descending in the cloud, and 
proclaiming the Name of the Lord as He passes by, 
* The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, 
long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth.' 
And as Moses on the mountain, so we too 'make 
haste and bow our heads to the earth, and worship.' 
So we, all around, each in his place, look out for the 


great Advent, ' waiting for the moving of the water.' 
Each in his place, with his own heart, with his own 
wants, with his own thoughts, with his own intention, 
with his own prayers, separate but concordant, watch- 
ing what is going on, watching its progress, uniting 
in its consummation ; — not painfully and hopelessly 
following a hard form of prayer from beginning to 
end, but like a concert of musical instruments, each 
different, but concurring in a sweet harmony, we 
take our part with God's priest, supporting him, yet 
guided by him. There are little children there, and 
old men, and simple labourers, and students in semi- 
naries, priests preparing for Mass, priests making 
their thanksgiving ; there are innocent maidens, and 
there are penitents ; but out of these many minds 
rises one eucharistic hymn, and the great Action is 
the measure and the scope of it. And oh, my dear 
Bateman," he added, turning to him, "you ask me 
whether this is not a formal unreasonable service. It 
is wonderful !" he cried, rising up, " quite wonder- 
ful. When will these dear good people be enlight- 
ened, Sapientia,fortiter suaviterque disponens omnia, 
O Adonai, Clavis David et Exspectatio gentium, 
veni ad salvandum nos, Domine Deus noster." 

Now, at least, there was no mistaking Willis. 
Bateman stared, and was almost frightened at a 
burst of enthusiasm which he had been far from ex- 
pecting. "Why, Willis," he said, "it is not true, 
then, after all, what we heard, that you were some- 
what dubious, shaky, in your adherence to Roman- 
ism ? I'm sure I beg your pardon ; I would not for 
the world have annoyed you, had I known the truth." 



Willis's face still glowed, and he looked as youth- 
ful and radiant as he had been two years before. 
There was nothing ungentle in his impetuosity ; a 
smile, almost a laugh, was on his face, as if he was 
half ashamed of his own warmth ; but this took no- 
thing from its evident sincerity. He seized Bate- 
man's two hands, before the latter knew where he 
was, lifted him up out of his seat, and raising his own 
mouth close to his ear, said in a low voice, " I would 
to God, that not only thou, but also all who hear me 
this day, were both almost and altogether such as I 
am, except these bonds." Then, reminding him it 
had grown late, and bidding him good night, he left 
the room with Charles. 

Bateman remained a while with his back to the 
fire after the door had closed ; presently he began to 
give expression to his thoughts. " Well," he said, 
" he's a brick, a regular brick ; he has almost af- 
fected me myself. What a way those fellows have 
with them ! I declare his touch has made my heart 
beat ; how catching enthusiasm is ! Any one but I 
might really have been unsettled. He is a real good 
fellow ; what a pity we have not got him ! he's just 
the sort of man we want. He'd make a splendid 
Anglican; he'd convert half the dissenters in the 
country. Well, we shall have them in time ; we 
must not be impatient. But the idea of his talking 
of converting me! 'almost and altogether!' I a 
Romanist ! By the by, what did he mean by * ex- 
cept these bonds V " He sat ruminating on the dif- 
ficulty ; at first he was inclined to think that, after 
all, he might have some misgiving about his position ; 


then he thought that perhaps he had a hair-shirt or a 
catenella on him ; and lastly he came to the conclu- 
sion that he had just meant nothing at all, and did 
but finish the quotation he had begun. 

After passing some little time in this state, he 
looked towards the tea-tray ; poured himself out an- 
other cup of tea ; ate a bit of toast ; took the coals 
off the fire ; blew out one of the candles, and taking 
up the other, left the parlour, and wound like an 
omnibus up the steep twisting staircase to his bed- 

Meanwhile Willis and Charles were proceeding 
to their respective homes. For a while they had 
to pursue the same path, which they did in silence. 
Charles had been moved far more than Bateman, 
or rather touched, by the enthusiasm of his Catholic 
friend, though, from a difficulty in finding language 
to express himself, and a fear of being carried off his 
legs, he had kept his feelings to himself. When they 
were about to part, Willis said to him in a subdued 
tone, " You are soon going to Oxford, dearest Reding ; 
Oh, that you were one with us ! You have it in you. 
I have thought of you at Mass many times. Our 
priest has said Mass for you. Oh, my dear friend, 
quench not God's grace ; listen to His call ; you have 
had what others have not. What you want is faith. 
I suspect you have quite proof enough ; enough to 
be converted on. But faith is a gift ; pray for that 
great gift, without which you cannot come to the 
Church ; without which," and he paused, "you can- 
not walk aright when you are in the Church. And 
now farewell ! alas, our path divides : all is easy to 


him that believeth. May God give you that gift of 
faith, as He has given me ! Farewell again ; who 
knows when I may see you next, and where? may 
it be in the courts of the true Jerusalem, the Queen 
of Saints, the Holy Roman Church, the Mother of 
us all!" He drew Charles to him, and kissed his 
cheek, and was gone before Charles had time to say 
a word. 

Yet Charles could not have spoken, had he had 
ever so much opportunity. He set off at a brisk 
pace, cutting down with his stick the twigs and 
brambles which the pale twilight discovered in his 
path. It seemed as if the kiss of his friend had 
conveyed into his own soul the enthusiasm which his 
words had betokened. He felt himself possessed, he 
knew not how, by a high superhuman power, which 
seemed able to push through mountains, and to walk 
the sea. With winter around him, he felt within 
like the springtide, when all is new and bright. He 
perceived that he had found, what indeed he had 
never sought, because he had never known what it 
was, but what he had ever wanted, — a soul sym- 
pathetic with his own. He felt he was no longer 
alone in the world, though he was losing that true 
congenial mind the very moment he had found him. 
Was this, he asked himself, the communion of 
Saints ? Alas ! how could it be, when he was in one 
communion, and Willis in another? "0 mighty 
Mother !" burst from his lips ; he quickened his 
pace almost to a trot, scaling the steep ascents and 
divhig into the hollows which lay between him and 
Boughton. " mighty Mother," he still said, half 


unconsciously ; " mighty Mother ! I come, 
mighty Mother ! I come ; but I am far from home. 
Spare me a little ; I come with what speed I may, 
but I am slow of foot, and not as others, mighty 
Mother." By the time he had walked two miles in 
this excitement, bodily and mental, he felt himself, 
as was not wonderful, considerably exhausted. He 
slackened his pace, and gradually came to himself; 
but still he went on, as if mechanically, " mighty 
Mother." Suddenly he cried, " Hallo ! where did I 
get those words? Willis did not use them. Well, 
I must be on my guard against these wild ways. 
Any one can be an enthusiast ; enthusiasm is not 
truth. ... mighty Mother! . . . Alas, I know 
where my heart is ! but I must go by reason .... 
mighty Mother !" 


The time came at length for Charles to return to 
Oxford; but during the last month scruples had 
risen in his mind, whether, with his present feelings, 
he could consistently even present himself for his 
examination. No subscription was necessary for bis 
entrance into the schools, but he felt that the honours 
of the class-list were only intended for those who 
were bond fide adherents of the Church of England. 
He laid his difficulty before Carlton, who in con- 
sequence did his best to ascertain thoroughly his 


present state of mind. It seemed that Charles had 
no intention, either now or at any future day, of 
joining the Church of Rome ; that he felt he could 
not take such a step at present without distinct sin ; 
that it would simply be against his conscience to do 
so ; that he had no feeling whatever that God called 
him to do so ; that he felt that nothing could justify 
so serious an act but the conviction that he could 
not be saved in the Church to which he belonged ; 
that he had no such feeling ; that he had no definite 
case against his own Church sufficient for leaving it, 
nor any definite view that the Church of Rome was 
the One Church of Christ : — that still he could not 
help suspecting that one day he should think other- 
wise ; he conceived the day might come, nay would 
come, when he should have that conviction which at 
present he had not, and which of course would be a 
call on him to act upon it, by leaving the Church of 
England for that of Rome ; he could not tell distinctly 
why he so anticipated, except that there were so 
many things which he thought right in the Church of 
Rome, and so many which he thought wrong in the 
Church of England ; and because, too, the more he 
had an opportunity of hearing and seeing, the greater 
cause he had to admire and revere the Roman Catholic 
system, and to be dissatisfied with his own. Carlton, 
after carefully considering the case, advised him to 
go in for his examination. He acted thus, on the 
one hand, as vividly feeling the changes which take 
place in the minds of young men, and the difficulty 
of Reding foretelling his own state of opinions two 
years to come ; and on the other, from the reasonable 


anticipation that a contrary advice would have been 
the very way to ripen his present doubts on the un- 
tenableness of Anglicanism into conviction. 

Accordingly, his examination came off in due 
time ; the schools were full, he did well, and his 
class was considered to be secure. Sheffield followed 
soon after, and did brilliantly. The list came out ; 
Sheffield was in the first class, Charles in the second. 
There is always of necessity a good deal of accident 
in these matters ; but in the present case reasons 
enough could be given to account for the unequal 
success of the two friends. Charles had lost some 
time by his father's death, and family matters con- 
sequent upon it ; and his virtual rustication for the 
last six months had been a considerable disadvantage 
to him. Moreover, though he had been a careful, 
persevering reader, he certainly had not run the race 
for honours with the same devotion as Sheffield ; 
nor had his religious difficulties, particularly his late 
indecision about presenting himself at all, been with- 
out their serious influence upon his attention and his 
energy. As success had not been the first desire of 
his soul, so failure was not his greatest misery. He 
would have much preferred success ; but in a day or 
two he found he could well endure the want of it. 

Now came the question about his degree, which 
could not be taken without subscription to the Arti- 
cles. Another consultation followed with Carlton. 
There was no need of his becoming a B.A. at the 
moment ; nothing woidd be gained by it ; better that 
he should postpone the step. He had but to go 
down, and say nothing about it ; no one would be 


the wiser ; and if, at the end of six months, as Carl- 
ton sanguinely anticipated, he found himself in a 
more comfortable frame of mind, then let him come 
up, and set all right. 

What was he to do with himself at the moment ? 
There was little difficulty here either, what to pro- 
pose. He had better be reading with some clergy- 
man in the country ; thus he would at once be 
preparing for orders, and clearing his mind on the 
points which at present troubled him; besides, he 
might thus have some opportunity for parochial 
duty, which would have a tranquillising and sobering 
effect on his mind. As to the books to which he 
should give his attention, of course the choice would 
rest with the clergyman who was to guide him ; 
but for himself he would not recommend the usual 
works in controversy with Rome, for which the 
Anglican Church was famous ; rather those which 
are of a positive character, which treated subjects 
philosophically, historically, or doctrinally, and dis- 
played the peculiar principles of that Church ; 
Hooker's great work, for instance ; or Bull's De- 
fensio and Harmonia, or Pearson's Vindicice, or Jack- 
son on the Creed, a noble work ; to which Laud on 
Tradition might be added, though its form was con- 
troversial. Such, too, were Bingham's Antiquities* 
Waterland on the Use of Antiquity, Wall on Infant 
Baptism, and Palmer on the Liturgy. Nor ought he 
to neglect practical and devotional authors, as Bishops 
Taylor, WUson, and Home. The most important 
point remained ; whither was he to betake himself? 
did he know of any clergyman in the country, who 


would be willing to receive him as a friend and a 
pupil? Charles thought of Campbell, with whom 
he was on the best of terms ; and Carlton knew 
enough of him by reputation, to be perfectly sure 
that he could not be in safer hands. 

Charles, in consequence, made the proposal to 
him, and it was accepted. Nothing then remained 
for him, but to pay a few bills, to pack up some 
books which he had left in a friend's room, and then 
to bid adieu, at least for a time, to the cloisters and 
groves of the University. He quitted in June, when 
every thing was in that youthful and fragrant beauty 
which he had admired so much in the beginning of 
his residence three years before. 



But now we must look forward, not back. Once 
before we took leave to pass over nearly two years 
in the life of tbe subject of this narrative, and now 
a second and a dreary space of more than the same 
length shall be consigned to oblivion, and the reader 
shall be set down in the autumn of the year next but 
one after that in which Charles took his class and 
did not take his degree. 

At this time our interest is confined to Boughton 
and the Rectory at Sutton. As to Melford, friend 
Bateman had accepted the incumbency of a church 
in a manufacturing town with a district of 10,000 
souls, where he was full of plans for the introduction 
of the surplice and gilt candlesticks among his peo- 
ple. Willis also was gone, on a different errand : he 
had bid adieu to his mother and brother soon after 
Charles had gone into the schools, and now was Fa- 
ther Aloysius de Sancta Cruce in the Passionist Con- 
vent of Pennington. 

One evening, at the end of September, in the 
year aforesaid, Campbell had called at Boughton, 
and was walking in the garden with Miss Reding. 


" Really, Mary," he said to her, " I don't think it 
does any good to keep him. The best years of his 
life are going, and, humanly speaking, there is not 
any chance of his changing his mind, at least till he 
has made a trial of the Church of Rome. It is quite 
possible that that experience may drive him back." 
" It is a dreadful dilemma," she answered; "how 
can we even indirectly give him permission to take 
so fatal a step ?" " He is a dear good fellow," he 
made reply ; " he is a sterling fellow ; all this long 
time that he has been with me he has made no dim" 
culties ; he has read thoroughly the books I recom- 
mended and more, and done whatever I told him. 
You know I have employed him in the parish ; he 
has taught the catechism to the children, and been 
almoner. Poor fellow, his health is suffering now ; 
he sees there's no end of it, and hope deferred makes 
the heart sick." " It is so dreadful to give any coun- 
tenance to what is so very wrong," said Mary. " Why, 
what is to be done?" answered Campbell; "and 
we need not countenance it ; he can't be kept in 
leading-strings for ever, and there has been a kind of 
bargain. He wanted to make a move at the end of 
the first year ; — I didn't think it worth while to fidget 
you about it ; — but I quieted him. We compounded 
in this way : he removed his name from the college- 
boards, — there was not the slightest chance of his 
ever signing the Articles, — and he consented to wait 
another year. Now the time's up, and more, and he 
is getting impatient. So it's not we who shall be 
giving him countenance, it will only be his leaving 
us." " But it is so fearful," insisted Mary ; " and my 


poor mother, — I declare I think it will be her death." 
" It will be a crushing blow, there's no doubt of 
that," said Campbell ; " what does she know of it at 
present ?" " I hardly can tell you," answered she ; 
" she has been informed of it indeed distinctly a year 
ago ; but seeing Charles so often, and he in appear- 
ance just the same, I fear she does not realise it. 
She has never spoken to me on the subject. I fancy 
she thinks it a scruple ; troublesome, certainly, but 
of course temporary." " I must break it to her, 
Mary," said Campbell. " Well, I think it must be 
done," she replied, heaving a sudden sigh ; " and if 
so, it will be a real kindness in you to save me a 
task to which I am quite unequal. But have a talk 
with Charles first. When it comes to the point, he 
may have a greater difficulty than he thinks before- 
hand." And so it was settled ; and, full of care at 
the double commission with which he was charged, 
Campbell rode back to Sutton. 

Poor Charles was sitting at an open window, 
looking out upon the prospect, when Campbell en- 
tered the room. It was a beautiful landscape, with 
bold hills in the distance, and a rushing river be- 
neath him. Campbell came up to him without his 
perceiving it ; and, putting his hand on his shoulder, 
asked his thoughts. Charles turned round, and 
smiled sadly. " I am hke Moses seeing the land," 
he said ; " my dear Campbell, when shall the end 
be ?" " That, my good Charles, of course does not 
rest with me," answered Campbell. " Well," said 
he, " the year is long run out; may I go my way?" 
" You can't expect that I, or any of us, should even 


indirectly countenance you in what, with all our love 
of you, we think a sin," said Campbell. " That is as 
much as to say, 'Act for yourself,' " answered Charles ; 
" well, I am willing." Campbell did not at once reply ; 
then he said, " I shall have to break it to your poor 
mother ; Mary thinks it will be her death." Charles 
dropped his head on the window-sill upon his hands. 
" No," he said ; " I trust that she, and all of us, 
will be supported." " So do I fervently," answered 
Campbell ; " it will be a most terrible blow to your 
sisters. My dear fellow, should you not take all 
this into account? Do seriously consider the actual 
misery you are causing for possible good." " Do 
you think I have not considered it, Campbell? Is 
it nothing for one like me to be breaking all these 
dear ties, and to be losing the esteem and sympathy 
of so many persons I love ? Oh, it has been a most 
piercing thought; but I have exhausted it, I have 
drank it out. I have got familiar with the prospect 
now, and am fully reconciled. Yes, I give up home, 
I give up all who have ever known me, loved me, 
valued me, wished me well; I know well I am 
making myself a bye-word and an outcast." " Oh, 
my dear Charles," answered Campbell, " beware of 
a very subtle temptation which may come on you 
here. I have meant to warn you of it before. The 
greatness of the sacrifice stimulates you ; you do 
it because it is so much to do." Charles smiled. 
" How little you know me !" he said ; " if that were 
the case, should I have waited patiently two years 
and more? Why did I not rush forward as others 
have done? You will not deny that I have acted 


rationally, obediently. I have put the subject from 
me again and again, and it has returned." " I'll 
say nothing harsh or unkind of you, Charles," said 
Campbell; "but it's a most unfortunate delusion. 
I wish I could make you take in the idea that there 
is the chance of its being a delusion." " Ah, Camp- 
bell, how can you forget so?" answered Charles; 
" don't you know this is the very thing which has 
influenced me so much all along ? I said, ' Perhaps 
I am in a dream. Oh, that I could pinch myself and 
awake !' You know what stress I laid on my change 
of feeling upon my dear father's death ; what I thought 
to be convictions before, vanished then like a cloud. 
I have said to myself, ' Perhaps these will vanish 
too.' But no; 'the clouds return after the rain;' 
they come again and again heavier than ever. It 
is a conviction rooted in me ; it endures against the 
prospect of the loss of mother and sisters. Here I 
sit wasting my days, when I might be useful in life. 
Why ? Because this hinders me. Lately it has 
increased on me tenfold. You will be shocked, but 
let me tell you in confidence, — lately I have been 
quite afraid to ride, or to bathe, or to do any thing 
out of the way, lest something should happen, and 
I might be taken away with a great duty unaccom- 
plished. No, by this time I have proved that it is a 
real conviction. My belief in the Church of Rome 
is part of myself; I cannot act against it without 
acting against God." " It is a most deplorable state 
of things certainly," said Campbell, who had be- 
gun to walk up and down the room; "that it is a 
delusion I am confident ; perhaps you are to find 


it so just when you have taken the step. You will 
solemnly bind yourself to a foreign creed, and, as 
the words part from your mouth, the mist will roll 
up from before your eyes, and the truth will shew 
itself. How dreadful !" "I have thought of that 
too," said Charles, " and it has influenced me a great 
deal. It has made me shrink back. But I now 
believe it to be hke those hideous forms which in 
fairy tales beset good knights, when they would force 
their way into some enchanted palace. Recollect 
the words in Thalaba — * The talisman is faith.' If 
I have good grounds for believing, to believe is a 
duty ; God will take care of His own work. I shall 
not be deserted in my utmost need. Faith ever 
begins with a venture, and is rewarded with cer- 
tainty." "Yes, my good Charles," answered Camp- 
bell ; "but the question is whether your grounds 
are good. What I mean is, that, since they are not 
good, they will not avail you in the trial. You will 
then, too late, find that they are not good, but de- 
lusive." "Campbell," answered Charles, " I con- 
sider that all reason comes from God ; our grounds 
must at best be imperfect ; but if they appear to 
be sufficient after prayer, diligent search, obedience, 
waiting, and, in short, doing our part, they are His 
voice calling us on. It is in that case He that makes 
them seem convincing to us. I am in His hands. 
The only question is, what would He have me to 
do ? I cannot resist the conviction which is upon me. 
This last week it has possessed me in a different 
way than ever before. It is now so strong that to 
wait longer is to resist God. Whether I join the 


Catholic Church is now simply a question of days. 
I wish, dear Campbell, to leave you in peace and 
love. Therefore, consent ; let me go." " Let you 
go!" answered Campbell; "certainly, were it the 
Catholic Church to which you are going, there would 
be no need to ask ; but ' let you go,' how can you 
expect it from us when we do not think so ? Think 
of our case, Charles, as well as your own ; throw 
yourself into our state of feeling. For myself I 
cannot deny, I never have concealed from you, my 
convictions that the Romish Church is antichristian. 
She has ten thousand gifts, she is in many respects 
superior to our own ; but she has a something in her 
which spoils all. I have no confidence in her ; and 
that being the case, how can I ' let you go' to her ? 
No ; it's like a person saying, 'Let me go and hang 
myself;' 'let me go sleep in a fever- ward ;' 'let 
me jump into that well ;' how can I 'let you go V ' : 
"Ah," said Charles, "that's our dreadful difference ; 
we can't get further than that. J think the Church 
of Rome the Prophet of God ; you, the tool of the 
devil." " I own," said Campbell, " I do think that, 
if you take this step, you will find yourself in the 
hands of a Circe, who will change you, make a brute 
of you." Charles slightly coloured. "I won't go 
on," added Campbell ; " I pain you ; it's no good ; 
perhaps I am making matters worse." Neither 
spoke for some time. At length Charles got up, 
came up to Campbell, took his hand, and kissed it. 
"You have been a kind disinterested friend to me 
for two years," he said ; "you have given me a lodg- 
ing under your roof; and now we are soon to be 


united by closer ties. God reward you ; but ' let 
me go, for the day breaketh.' " " It is hopeless," 
cried Campbell ; " let us part friends : I must break 
it to your mother." 

In ten days after this conversation, Charles was 
ready for his journey ; his room put to rights ; his 
portmanteau strapped; and the gig at the door, 
which was to take him the first stage. He was to 
go round by Boughton ; it had been arranged by 
Campbell and Mary, that it would be best for him 
not so see his mother (to whom Campbell had 
broken the matter at once) till he took leave of her. 
It would be needless pain to both of them to attempt 
an interview sooner. 

Charles leapt from the gig with a beating heart, 
and ran up to his mother's room. She was sitting 
by the fire at her work when he entered ; she held 
out her hand coldly to him, and he sat down. No- 
thing was said for a little while ; then, without leav- 
ing off her occupation, she said, ** Well, Charles, 
and so you are leaving us. Where and how do you 
propose to employ yourself when you have entered 
upon your new life?" Charles answered that he 
had not yet turned his mind to the consideration of 
any thing but the great step on which every thing 
else depended. There was another silence; then 
she said, " You won't find any where such friends 
as you have had at home, Charles." Presently she 
continued, "You have had every thing in your 
favour, Charles ; you have been blessed with talents, 
advantages of education, easy circumstances ; many 
a deserving young man has to scramble on as he 


can." Charles answered, that he was deeply sen- 
sible how much he owed in temporal matters to Pro- 
vidence, and that it was only at His bidding that he 
was giving them up. " We all looked up to you, 
Charles ; perhaps we made too much of you ; well, 
God be with you ; you have taken your line." Poor 
Charles said that no one could conceive what it cost 
him to give up what was so very dear to him, what 
was part of himself; there was nothing on earth 
which he prized like his home. " Then why do you 
leave us?" she said, quickly; " you must have your 
way; you do it, I suppose, because you like it." 
" Oh really, my dear mother," cried he, "if you saw 
my heart ! You know in Scripture how people were 
obliged, in the Apostles' times, to give up all for 
Christ." "We are heathens, then," she replied; 
" thank you, Charles, I am obliged to you for this ;" 
and she dashed away a tear from her eye. Charles 
was almost beside himself ; he did not know what to 
say ; he stood up and leaned his elbow on the mantel- 
piece, supporting his head on his hand. " Well, 
Charles," she continued, still going on with her 
work, " perhaps the day will come" . . . her voice 
faltered ; " your dear father" . . . she put down her 
work. "It is useless misery," said Charles ; "why 
should I stay? good-bye for the present, my dearest 
mother. I leave you in good hands, not kinder, but 
better than mine ; you lose me, you gain another. 
Farewell for the present ; we will meet when you 
will, when you call ; it will be a happy meeting." 
He threw himself on his knees, and laid his cheek 
on her lap ; she could no longer resist him ; she 


hung over him, and hegan to smooth down his hair 
as she had done when he was a child. At length 
scalding tears began to fall heavily upon his face 
and neck ; he bore them for a while, then started up, 
kissed her cheek impetuously, and rushed out of the 
room. In a few seconds he had seen and had torn 
himself from his sisters, and was in his gig again by 
the side of his phlegmatic driver, dancing slowly up 
and down on his way to Collumpton. 


The reader may ask whither Charles is going, and, 
though it would not be quite true to answer that he 
did not know better than the said reader himself, yet 
he had most certainly very indistinct notions what 
was becoming of him even locally, and, like the Pa- 
triarch, " went out, not knowing whither he went." 
He had never seen a Catholic Priest to know him in 
his life ; never, except once as a boy, been inside a 
Catholic church ; he only knew one Catholic in the 
world, and where he was he did not know. But he 
knew that the Passionists had a Convent in London ; 
and it was not unnatural that, without knowing 
whether young Father Aloysius was there or not, he 
should direct his course to San Michaele. 

Yet, in kindness to Mary and all of them, he did 
not profess to be leaving direct for London ; but he 
proposed to betake himself to Carlton, who still re- 


sided in Oxford, and to ask his advice what was to 
be done under his circumstances. It seemed too 
to be interposing what they would consider a last 
chance of averting what to them was so dismal a 

To Oxford, then, he directed his course; and 
having some accidental business at Bath, he stopped 
there for the night, intending to continue his journey 
next morning. Among other jobs, he had to get a 
' Garden of the Soul,' and two or three similar books 
which might help him in the great preparation which 
awaited his arrival in London. He went into a religi- 
ous publisher's in Danvers Street with that object, and, 
while engaged in a back part of the shop in looking 
over a pile of Catholic works, which, to the religious 
public, had inferior attractions to the glittering vo- 
lumes, evangelical and Anglo-Catholic, which had 
possession of the windows and principal table, he 
heard the shop-door open, and, on looking round, saw 
a familiar face. It was that of a young clergyman, 
with a very pretty girl on his arm, whom her dress 
pronounced to be a bride. Love was in their eyes, 
joy in their voice, and affluence in their gait and 
bearing. Charles had a faintish feeling come over 
him ; somewhat such as might beset a man on hear- 
ing a call for pork-chops when he was sea-sick. He 
retreated behind a pile of ledgers and other station- 
ary, but they could not save him from the low, thrill- 
ing tones which from time to time passed from one 
to the other. 

" Have you got some of the last Oxford reprints 
of standard works ?" said the bridegroom to the shop- 


man. "Yes, sir ; but which set did you mean ? ' Se- 
lections from old divines,' or ' New Catholic adapta- 
tions?'" "Ob, not the Adaptations," answered he, 
" they are extremely dangerous ; I mean real Church- 
of-England divinity — Bull, Patrick, Hooker, and the 
rest of them." The shopman went to look them out. 
" I think it was those Adaptations, dearest," said the 
lady, "that the Bishop warned us against." "Not 
the Bishop, Louisa ; it was his daughter." " Oh, 
Miss Primrose, so it was," said she ; " and there was 
one book she recommended, what was it?" "Not 
a book, love ; it was a speech," said White ; " Mr. 
O'Balla way's at Exeter Hall ; but I think we should 
not quite like it." " No, no, Henry, it was a book, 
dear; I can't recal the name." "You mean Dr. 
Crow's ' New Refutation of Popery,' perhaps ; but 
the Bishop recommended that." 

The shopman returned. " Oh, what a sweet face !" 
she said, looking at the frontispiece of a little book she 
got hold of ; " do look, Henry dear ; whom does it put 
you in mind of?" " Why, it's meant for St. John the 
Baptist," said Henry. "It's so like little Angelina 
Primrose," said she, " the hair is just hers. I wonder 
it doesn't strike you." " It does — it does, dearest," 
said he, smiling at her ; u but it's getting late ; you 
must not be out much longer in the sharp air, and 
you have nothing for your throat. I have chosen my 
books, while you have been gazing on that little St. 
John." " I can't think who it is so like," continued 
she ; " oh, I know ; it's Angelina's aunt, Lady Con- 
stance." "Come, Louisa, the horses too will suffer; 
we must return to our friends." "Oh, there's one 


book, I can't recollect it; tell me what it is, Henry? 
I shall be so sorry not to have got it." " Was it the 
new work on Gregorian Chants ?" asked he. " Ah, 
it's true, I want it for the school-children, but it's not 
that." " Is it * The Catholic Parsonage V " he asked 
again ; " or, ' Lays of the Apostles V or, ' The Eng- 
lish Church older than the Roman V or, ' Anglican- 
ism of the Early Martyrs V or, • Confessions of a 
Pervert V or, ' Eustace Beville V or, ' Modified Celi- 
bacy V " " No, no, no," said Louisa ; " dear me, it 
is so stupid." "Well, now really, Louisa," he in- 
sisted, " you must come another time ; it won't do, 
dearest, it won't do." " Oh, I recollect," she said, 
" I recollect — ' Abbeys and Abbots ;' I want to get 
some hints for improving the rectory-windows, when 
we get home ; and our church wants, you know, a 
porch for the poor people. The book is full of 
designs." The book was found, and added to the 
rest, which had been already taken to the carriage. 
" Now, Louisa," said White. " Well, dearest, there's 
one more place we must call at," she made answer ; 
"tell John to drive to Sharp's ; we can go round by 
the Nursery — it's only a few steps out of the way — > 
I want to say a word to the man there about our 
greenhouse ; there is no good gardener in our own 
neighbourhood." " What is the good, Louisa, now V 
said her husband ; " we shan't be at home this month 
to come ;" and then, with due resignation, he directed 
the coachman to the nurseryman's whom Louisa 
named, as he put her into the carriage, and then fol- 
lowed her. 

Charles breathed freely as they went out ; a 


severe text of Scripture rose on his mind, but he 
repressed the censorious or uncharitable feeling, and 
turned himself to the anxious duties which lay before 


Nothing happened to Charles worth relating before 
his arrival at Steventon next day ; when, the afternoon 
being fine, he left his portmanteau to follow him by 
the omnibus, and put himself upon the road. If it 
required some courage to undertake by himself a long 
journey on an all-momentous errand, it did not lessen 
the difficulty that that journey took in its way a place 
and person so dear to him as Oxford and Carlton. 

He had passed through Bagley Wood, and the 
spires and towers of the University came on his 
view, hallowed by how many tender associations, lost 
to him for two whole years, suddenly recovered — 
recovered to be lost for ever ! There lay old Oxford 
before him, with its hills as gentle and its meadows 
as green as ever. At the first view of that beloved 
place, he stood still with folded arms, unable to 
proceed. Each college, each church, he counted 
them by their pinnacles and turrets. The silver Isis, 
the grey willows, the far-stretching plains, the dark 
groves, the distant range of Shotover, the pleasant 
village where he had lived with Carlton and Shef- 
field — wood, water, stone, all so calm, so bright, they 
might have been his, but his they were not. What- 
ever he was to gain by becoming a Catholic, this 


he had lost ; whatever he was to gain higher and 
better, at least this and such as this he never could 
have again. He could not have another Oxford, he 
could not have the friends of his boyhood and youth 
in the choice of his manhood. He mounted the 
well-known gate on the left, and proceeded down 
into the plain. There was no one to greet him, to 
sympathise with him ; there was no one to believe 
he needed sympathy ; no one to believe he had given 
up any thing, no one to take interest in him, to feel 
tender towards him, to defend him. He had suf- 
fered much, but there was no one to believe that he 
had suffered. He would be thought to be inflicting 
merely, not undergoing, suffering. He might say 
that he had suffered ; but he would be rudely told, 
that every one follows his own will, and that if he 
had given up Oxford, it was for a whim which he 
liked better than it. But rather, there was no one to 
know him ; he had been virtually three years away ; 
three years is a generation ; Oxford had been his 
place once, but his place knew him no more. He 
recollected with what awe and transport he had at 
first come to the University as to some sacred shrine ; 
and how from time to time hopes had come over him 
that some day or other he should have gained a title 
to residence on one of its ancient foundations. One 
night, in particular, came across his memory, how a 
friend and he had ascended to the top of one of its 
many towers with the purpose of making observations 
on the stars ; and how while his friend was busily 
engaged with the pointers, he, earthly-minded youth, 
had been looking down into the deep, gas- lit, dark- 


shadowed quadrangles, and wondering if he should 
ever be Fellow of this or that College, which he 
singled out from the mass of academical buildings. 
All had passed as a dream, and he was a stranger 
where he had hoped to have had a home. 

He was drawing near Oxford ; he saw along the 
road before him brisk youths pass, two and two, 
with elastic tread, finishing their modest daily walk, 
and nearing the city. What had been a tandem a 
mile back, next crossed his field of view, shorn of 
its leader. Presently a stately cap and gown loomed 
in the distance ; he had gained the road before it 
crossed him ; it was a college-tutor whom he had 
known a little. Charles expected to be recognised ; 
but the resident passed by with that half-conscious, 
uncertain gaze which seemed to have some memory 
of a face which yet was strange. He had passed 
Folly Bridge ; troops of horsemen overtook him, 
talking loud, while with easy jaunty pace they turned 
into their respective stables. He crossed to Christ 
Church, and penetrated to Peckwater. The evening 
was still bright, and the gas was lighting. Groups 
of young men were stationed here and there, the 
greater number in hat, a few in caps, one or two 
with gowns in addition. Some were hallooing up 
to their companions at the windows of the second 
story ; scouts were carrying about eeger dinners ; 
pastry-cook boys were bringing in desserts ; shabby 
fellows with Blenheim puppies were loitering under 
Canterbury Gate. Many stared, but no one knew 
him. He hurried up Oriel Lane ; suddenly a start 
and a low bow from a passer-by ; who could it be ? 


it was a superannuated shoeblack of his college, to 
whom he had sometimes given a stray shilling. He 
gained the High Street, and turned down towards 
the Angel. What was approaching? the vision of 
a proctor. Charles felt an instinctive quivering ; 
but it passed by him, and did no harm. Like Ke- 
hama, he had a charmed life. And now he had 
reached his inn, where he found his portmanteau all 
ready for him. He chose a bed-room, and, after 
fully inducting himself into it, turned his thoughts 
towards dinner. 

He wished to lose no time, but, if possible, to 
proceed to London the following morning. It would 
be a great point if he could get to his journey's end 
so early in the week, that by Sunday, if he was 
thought worthy, he might offer up his praises for 
the mercies vouchsafed to him, in the great and holy 
communion of the Universal Church. Accordingly 
he determined to make an attempt on Carlton that 
evening ; and hoped, if he went to his room between 
seven and eight, to find him returned from Com- 
mon Room. With this intention he sallied out at 
about the half-hour, gained Carlton's college, knocked 
at the gate, entered, passed on, up the worn wooden 
steep staircase. The oak was closed ; he descended, 
found a servant ; " Mr. Carlton was giving a dinner 
in Common Room ; it would soon be over." Charles 
determined to wait for him. 

The servant lighted candles in the inner room ; 
and Charles sat down at the fire. For a while he 
sat in reflection ; then he looked about for some- 
thing to occupy him. His eye caught an Oxford 


paper ; it was but a few days old. " Let us see 
how the old place goes on," he said to himself, as 
he took it up. He glanced from one article to an- 
other, looking who were the University-preachers of 
the week, who had taken degrees, who were public 
examiners, &c. &c, when his eye was arrested by 
the following paragraph : 

" Defection from the Church. — We under- 
stand that another victim has lately been added to 
the list of those whom the venom of Tractarian 
principles has precipitated into the bosom of the 
Sorceress of Rome. Mr. Reding of St. Saviour's, 
the son of a respectable clergyman of the Establish- 
ment, deceased, after eating the bread of the Church 
all his life, has at length avowed himself the subject 
and slave of an Italian Bishop. Disappointment in 
the schools is said to have been the determining 
cause of this infatuated act. It is reported that 
legal measures are in progress for directing the 
penalties of the Statute of Praemunire against all 
the seceders ; and a proposition is on foot for pe- 
titioning her Majesty to assign the sum thereby 
realised by the Government, to the erection of a 
'Martyrs' Memorial' in the sister University." 

" So," thought Charles, " the world, as usual, is 
beforehand with me ;" and he sat speculating about 
the origin of the report, till he almost forgot that he 
was waiting; for Carlton. 



While Charles was learning in Carlton's rooms the 
interest which the world took in his position and 
acts, he was actually furnishing a topic of conversa- 
tion to that portion of it which was assembled in 
social meeting in the neighbouring Common Room. 
Tea and coffee had made their appearance, the guests 
had risen from table, and were crowding round the 
fire. " Who is this Mr. Reding, spoken of in the 
' Gazette' of last week ?" said a prim little man, 
sipping his tea with his spoon, and rising on his toes 
as he spoke. "You need not go far for an answer," 
said his neighbour, and, turning to their host, added, 
" Carlton, who is Mr. Reding 1" " A very dear 
honest fellow," answered Carlton ; " I wish we were 
all of us as good. He read with me one Long Va- 
cation, is a good scholar, and ought to have gained 
his class. I have not heard of him for some time." 
" He has other friends in the room," said another : 
" I think," turning to a young Fellow of Leicester, 
"you, Sheffield, were at one time intimate with 
Reding." "Yes," answered Sheffield; "and Vin- 
cent of course knows him too ; he's a capital fellow ; 
I know him exceedingly well ; what the ' Gazette' 
says about him is shameful. I never met a man who 
cared less about success in the schools ; it was quite 
his fault." " That's about the truth," said another ; 
" I met Mr. Malcolm yesterday at dinner, and it 
seems he knows the family. He said that his reli- 


gious notions carried Reding away, and spoiled his 

The conversation was not general ; it went on in 
detached groups, as the guests stood together. Nor 
was the subject a popular one ; rather it was either 
a painful or a disgusting subject to the whole party, 
two or three curious and hard minds excepted, to 
whom opposition to Catholicism was meat and drink. 
Besides, in such chance collections of men, no one 
knew exactly his neighbour's opinion about it ; and, 
as in this instance, there were often friends of the 
accused or calumniated present. And moreover, 
there was a generous feeling, and a consciousness 
how much seceders from the Anglican Church were 
giving up, which kept down any disrespectful men- 
tion of them. 

" Are you to do much in the schools this term ?" 
said one to another. " I don't know ; we have two 
men going up, good scholars." " Who has come into 
Stretton's place ?" " Jackson of King's." " Jackson ? 
indeed ; he's strong in science, I think." " Very." 
" Our men know their books well, but I should not 
say that science is their line." " Leicester sends 
four." " It will be a large class-list, from what I 
hear." " Ah ! indeed ! the Michaelmas paper is 
always a good one." 

Meanwhile the conversation was in another quar- 
ter dwelling upon poor Charles. " No, depend up- 
on it, there's more in what the 'Gazette' says than 
you think. Disappointment is generally at the bot- 
tom of these changes." "Poor devils ! they can't 
help it," said another, in a low voice, to his neigh- 


bour. "A good riddance, anyhow," said the party 
addressed ; " we shall have a little peace at last." 
"Well," said the first of the two, drawing himself 
up and speaking in the air, " how any educated man 
should" — his voice was overpowered by the grave 
enunciation of a small man behind them, who bad 
hitherto kept silence, and now spoke with positive- 
ness. He addressed himself, between the two heads 
which had been just talking in private, to the group 
beyond them. " It's all the effect of rationalism," he 
said ; " the whole movement is rationalistic. At the 
end of three years, all those persons who have now 
apostatised will be infidels. No one responded ; at 
length another of the party came up to Mr. Malcolm's 
acquaintance, and said slowly, "I suppose you 
never heard it hinted that there is something wrong 
here in Mr. Reding," touching his forehead signifi- 
cantly ; " I have been told it's in the family." He 
was answered by a deep, powerful voice, belonging 
to a person who sat in the corner ; it sounded like 
" the great bell of Bow," as if it ought to have 
closed the conversation. It said abruptly, "I re- 
spect him uncommonly ; I have an extreme respect 
for him. He's an honest man ; I wish others were 
as honest. If they were, then, as the Puseyites are 
becoming Catholics, so we should see old Brownside 
and his clique becoming Unitarians. But they mean 
to stick in." 

Most persons present felt the truth of his re- 
mark, and a silence followed it for a while. It 
was broken by a clear cackling voice. "Did you 
ever hear," said he, nodding his head, or rather his 



whole person, as he spoke, " did you ever, Shef- 
field, happen to hear, that this gentleman, your friend 
Mr. Reding, when he was quite a freshman, had a 
conversation with some attache of the Popish Chapel 
in this place, at the very door of it, after the men 
were gone down ?" " Impossible, Fusby," said 
Carlton, and laughed. " It's quite true," returned 
Fusby; "I had it from the Under -Marshal, who 
was passing at tbe moment. My eye has been on 
Mr. Reding for some years." "So it seems," said 
Sheffield, " for that must have been at least, let me 
see, five or six years ago." " Oh," continued Fusby, 
" there are two or three more yet to come ; you will 
see." "Why, Fusby," said Vincent, overhearing, 
and coming up, ° you are like the three old crones 
in the Bride of Lammermoor, who wished to have 
the straiking of the Master of Ravenswood." Fusby 
nodded his person, but made no answer. " Not all 
three at once, I hope," said Sheffield. "Oh, it's 
quite a concentration, a quintessence of Protestant 
feeling," answered Vincent ; "I consider myself a 
good Protestant ; but the pleasure you have in hunt- 
ing these men is quite sensual, Fusby." The Com- 
mon Room man here entered, and whispered to Carl- 
ton that a stranger was waiting for him in his rooms. 
" When do your men come up ?" said Sheffield 
to Vincent. " Next Saturday," answered Vincent. 
'* They always come up late," said Sheffield. " Yes, 
the House met last week." " St. Michael's has met 
too," said Sheffield; "so have we." "We have a 
reason for meeting late, many of our men come from 
the north and from Ireland." " That's no reason, 


with railroads." "I see they have begun ours," said 
Vincent; "I thought the University had opposed 
it." "The Pope has given in," said Sheffield, " so 
we may well do the same." " Don't talk of the 
Pope," said Vincent, " I'm sick of the Pope." " The 
Pope ?" said Fusby, overhearing ; " have you heard 
that his Holiness is coming to England ?" " Oh, oh," 
cried Vincent, " come, I can't stand this. I must 
go ; good night t'you, Carlton : where' s my gown?" 
" I believe the Common Room man has hung it up 
in the passage ; but you should stop and protect 
me from Fusby." Neither did Vincent turn to the 
rescue, nor did Fusby profit by the hint ; so poor 
Carlton, with the knowledge that he was wanted in 
his rooms, had to stay a good half-hour t&e-a-tete 
with the latter, while he prosed to him in extenso 
about Pope Gregory XVI., the Jesuits, suspected 
men in the University, Mede on the Apostacy, the 
Catholic Relief Bill, Dr. Pusey's Tract on Baptism, 
justification, and the appointment of the Taylor Pro- 

At length, however, Carlton was released. He 
ran across the quadrangle and up his staircase ; flung 
open his door, and made his way into his inner room. 
A person was just rising to meet him ; impossible ! 
but it was though. " What ? Reding !" he cried ; 
" who would have thought ! what a pleasure ! we 
were just — .... What brings you here V he added 
in an altered tone. Then gravely, " Reding, where 
are you?" "Not yet a Catholic," said Reding. 
There was a silence ; the answer conveyed a good 
deal : it was a relief, but it was an intimation. " Sit 


down, my dear Reding ; will you have any thing ? 
have you dined? What a pleasure to see you, old 
fellow ! Are we really to lose you ?" They were 
soon in conversation on the great subject. 


" If you have made up your mind, Reding," said 
Carlton, " it's no good talking. May you be happy 
wherever you are! You must always be yourself; 
as a Romanist, you will still be Charles Reding." 
" I know I have a kind, sympathising friend in you, 
Carlton. You have always listened to me, never 
snubbed me except when I deserved it. You know 
more about me than any one else. Campbell is a 
dear good fellow, and will soon be dearer to me still. 
It isn't generally known yet, but he is to marry my 
sister. He has borne with me now for two years ; 
never been hard upon me ; always been at my ser- 
vice when I wanted to talk with him. But no one 
makes me open my heart as you do, Carlton ; you 
sometimes have differed from me, but you have al- 
ways understood me." " Thank you for your kind 
words," answered Carlton ; " but to me it is a perfect 
mystery why you should leave us. I enter into your 
reasons ; I cannot, for the life of me, see how you 
come to your conclusion." " To me, on the other 
hand, Carlton, it is like two and two makes four ; and 
you make two and two five, and are astonished that 
I won't agree with you." " We must leave these 


tilings to a Higher Power," said Carlton ; " I hope 
we shan't be less friends, Reding, when you are in 
another communion. We know each other ; these 
outward things cannot change us." Reding sighed ; 
he saw clearly that his change of religion, when com- 
pleted, would not fail to have an effect on Carlton's 
thoughts of him, as on those of others. It could not 
possibly be otherwise : he was sure himself to feel 
differently about Carlton. 

After a while, Carlton said gently, " Is it quite 
impossible, Reding, that now at the eleventh hour we 
may retain you ? what are your grounds ?" " Don't 
let us argue, dear Carlton," answered Reding ; " I 
have done with argument. Or, if I must say some- 
thing for manners' sake, I will but tell you that I 
have fulfilled your request. You bade me read the 
Anglican divines ; I have given a great deal of time 
to them, and I am embracing that creed which alone 
is the scope to which they converge in their separate 
teaching; the creed which upholds the divinity of tra- 
dition with Laud, consent of Fathers with Beveridge, 
a visible Church with Bramhall, a tribunal of dog- 
matic decisions with Bull, the authority of the Pope 
with Thorndike, penance with Taylor, prayers for 
the dead with Ussher, celibacy, asceticism, ecclesi- 
astical discipline with Bingham. I seek a Church, 
which in these, and a multitude of other points, is 
nearer the apostolic Church than any existing one ; 
which is the continuation of the apostolic Church, if 
it has been continued at all. And seeing it to be 
like the apostolic Church, I believe it to be the same. 
Reason has gone first, faith is to follow." 


He stopped, and Carlton did not reply ; a silence 
ensued, and Charles at length broke it. " I repeat, 
it's no use arguing ; I have made up my mind, and 
been very slow about it. I have broken it to my 
mother, and bade her farewell. All is determined ; 
I cannot go back." " Is that a nice feeling 1" said 
Carlton, half reproachfully. " Understand me," an- 
swered Reding ; " I have come to my resolution with 
great deliberation. It has remained on my mind as 
a mere intellectual conclusion for a year or two ; 
surely now at length without blame I may change 
it into a practical resolve. But none of us can an- 
swer that those habitual and ruling convictions, on 
which it is our duty to act, will remain before our 
consciousness every moment, when we come into the 
hurry of the world, and are assailed by inducements 
and motives of various kinds. Therefore I say that 
the time of argument is past ; I act on a conclusion 
already drawn." " But how do you know," asked 
Carlton, " but what you have been unconsciously 
biassed in arriving at it? one notion has possessed 
you, and you have not been able to shake it off. 
The ability to retain your convictions in the bustle 
of life is to my mind the very test, the necessary 
test of their reality." " I do, I do retain them," an- 
swered Reding ; " they are always upon me." " Only 
at times, as you have yourself confessed," objected 
Carlton : " surely you ought to have a very strong 
conviction indeed, to set against the mischief you are 
doing by a step of this kind. Consider how many 
persons you are unsettling ; what a triumph you are 
giving to the enemies of all religion ; what encour- 


agement to the notion that there is no such thing as 
truth ; how you are weakening our Church. Well, 
all I say is, that you should have very strong con- 
victions to set against all this." " Well," said 
Charles, " I grant, I maintain, that the only motive 
which is sufficient to justify a move, is the convic- 
tion that one's salvation depends on it. Now, I speak 
sincerely, my dear Carlton, in saying, that I don't 
think I shall be saved, if I remain in the English 
Church." " Do you mean that there is no salvation 
in our Church ?" said Carlton, rather coldly. " No, 
but I am talking of myself; it's not my place to judge 
others. I only say, God calls me, and I must follow 
at the risk of my soul." " God ' calls' you !" said 
Carlton ; "what does that mean? I don't like it; it's 
dissenting language." " You know it is Scripture 
language," answered Reding. " Yes, but people 
don't in Scripture say, * I'm called ;' the calling was 
an act from without, the act of others, not an inward 
feeling." " But, my dear Carlton, how is a person to 
get at truth now, when there can be no simple out- 
ward call ?" " That seems to me a pretty good inti- 
mation," answered Carlton, " that we are to remain 
where Providence has placed us." " Now this is 
just one of the points on which I can't get at the 
bottom of the Church of England's doctrine. But 
it's so on so many other subjects ! it's always so. 
Are members of the Church of England to seek the 
truth, or have they it given them from the first ? do 
they seek it for themselves ? or is it ready provided 
for them ?" 

Carlton thought a moment, and seemed doubtful 


what to answer ; then he said that we must of course 
seek it. It was a part of our moral probation to 
seek the truth. " Then don't talk to me about our 
position," said Charles ; " I hardly expected you 
to make this answer ; but it is what the majority 
of Church-of-England people say. They tell us to 
seek, they give us rules for seeking, they make us 
exert our private judgment; but directly we come 
to any conclusion but theirs, they turn round and 
talk to us of our 'providential position.' But there's 
another thing. Tell me, supposing we ought all to 
seek the truth, do you think that members of the 
English Church do seek it in that way which Scrip- 
ture enjoins upon all seekers? Think how very 
seriously Scripture speaks of the arduousness of 
finding, the labour of seeking, the duty of thirsting 
after the truth? I don't believe the bulk of the 
English clergy, the bulk of Oxford residents, Heads 
of houses, Fellows of colleges (with all their good 
points, which I am not the man to deny,) have ever 
sought the truth. They have taken what they found, 
and have used no private judgment at all. Or if 
they have judged, it has been in the vaguest, most 
cursory way possible ; or they have looked into Scrip- 
ture only to find proofs for what they were bound 
to subscribe, as undergraduates getting up the Ar- 
ticles. Then they sit over their wine, and talk 
about this or that friend who has ' seceded,' and 
condemn him, and" (glancing at the newspaper on 
the table) " assign motives for his conduct. Yet, 
after all, which is the more likely to be right, — he 
who has given years, perhaps, to the search of truth, 


who has habitually prayed for guidance, and has 
taken all the means in his power to secure it; or 
they, ' the gentlemen of England who sit at home at 
ease V No, no, they may talk of seeking the truth, 
of private judgment, as a duty, but they have never 
sought, they have never judged ; they are where they 
are, not because it is true, but because they find 
themselves there, because it is their ' providential 
position/ and a pleasant one into the bargain." 

Reding had got somewhat excited ; the para- 
graph in the newspaper had annoyed him. But, 
without taking that into account, there was enough 
in the circumstances in which he found himself to 
throw him out of his ordinary state of mind. He 
was in a crisis of peculiar trial, which a person must 
have felt to understand. Few men go to battle in 
cool blood, or prepare without agitation for a sur- 
gical operation. Carlton, on the other hand, was a 
quiet, gentle person, who was not heard to use an 
excited word once a year. The conversation came 
to a stand. At length Carlton said, " I hope, dear 
Reding, you are not joining the Church of Rome 
merely because there are unreasonable, unfeeling 
persons in the Church of England." Charles felt 
that he was not shewing to advantage, and that he 
was giving rise to the very surmises about the mo- 
tives of his conversion which he was deprecating. 
" It is a sad tiling," he said with something of self- 
reproach, "to spend our last minutes in wrangling. 
Forgive me, Carlton, if I have said any thing too 
strongly or earnestly." Carlton thought he had ; he 
thought him in an excited state ; but it was no use 


telling him so ; so he merely pressed his offered 
hand affectionately, and said nothing. 

Presently he said, dryly and abruptly, " Reding, 
do you know any Roman Catholics 1" " No," an- 
swered Reding; "Willis indeed, but I hav'n't seen 
even him these two years. It has been entirely the 
working of my own mind." Carlton did not answer 
at once ; then he said, as dryly and abruptly as be- 
fore, " I suspect, then, you will have much to bear 
with when you know them." " What do you mean ?" 
asked Reding. " You will find them under-edu- 
cated men, I suspect." "What do you know of 
them ?" said Reding. " I suspect it," answered 
Carlton. "But what's that to the purpose?" asked 
Charles. " It's a thing you should think of. An 
English clergyman is a gentleman ; you may have 
more to bear than you reckon for, when you find 
yourself with men of rude minds and vulgar man- 
ners." " My dear Carlton, ar'n't you talking of what 
you know nothing at all about?" "Well, but you 
should think of it, you should contemplate it," said 
Carlton ; " I judge from their letters and speeches, 
which one reads in the papers." Charles thought a 
while; then he said, "Certainly, I don't like many 
things which are done and said by Roman Catholics 
just now ; but I don't see how all this can be more 
than a trial and a cross ; I don't see how it affects 
the great question." " No, except that you may 
find yourself a fish out of water," answered Carlton ; 
"you may find yourself in a position where you can 
act with no one, where you will be quite thrown 
away." "Well," said Charles, "as to the fact, I 


know nothing about it ; it may be as you say, but 
I don't think much of your proof. In all communi- 
ties the worst is on the outside. What offends me 
in Catholic public proceedings need be no measure, 
nay I believe cannot be a measure, of the inward 
Catholic mind. I would not judge the Anglican 
Church by Exeter Hall, nay not by Episcopal 
Charges. We see the interior of our own Church, 
the exterior of the Church of Rome. This is not 
a fair comparison." "But look at then- books of 
devotion," insisted Carlton ; " they can't write Eng- 
lish." Reding smiled at Carlton, and slowly shook 
his head to and fro, while he said, " They write 
English, I suppose, as classically as St. John writes 
Greek." Here again the conversation halted, and 
nothing was heard for a while but the simmering of 
the kettle. 

There was no good in disputing, as might be 
seen from the first; each had his own view, and 
that was the beginning and end of the matter. 
Charles stood up. " Well, dearest Carlton," he said, 
"we must part; it must be going on for eleven." 
He pulled out of his pocket a small " Christian 
Year." " You have often seen me with this," he 
continued; "accept it in memory of me. You will 
not see me, but here is a pledge that I will not for- 
get you, that I will ever remember you." He stop- 
ped, much affected. " Oh, it is very hard to leave 
you all, to go to strangers," he went on ; "I do not 
wish it, but I cannot help it ; I am called, I am 
compelled." He stopped again ; the tears flowed 
down his cheeks. "All is well," he said, recover- 


ing himself, " all is well ; but it's hard at the time, 
and scarcely any one to feel for me; black looks, 
bitter words ... I am pleasing myself, following my 
own will ! . . . well . . ." and he began looking at his 
fingers, and slowly rubbing his palms one on another. 
" It must be," he whispered to himself, " through tri- 
bulation to the kingdom, sowing in tears, reaping in 
joy . . ." Another pause, and a new train of thought 
came over him ; " Oh," he said, " I fear so very 
much, so very much, that all you who do not come 
forward will go back. You cannot stand where you 
are ; for a time you will think you do, then you will 
oppose us, and still think you keep your ground, 
while you use the same words as before ; but your 
belief, your opinions will decline. You will hold 
less. And then, in time, it will strike you that, in 
differing with Protestants, you are contending only 
about words. They call us Rationalists ; take care 
you don't fall into Liberalism. And now, my dearest 
Carlton, my one friend in Oxford who was patient 
and loving towards me, good-bye. May we meet 
not long hence in peace and joy. I cannot go to 
you ; you must come to me." They embraced each 
other affectionately; and the next minute Charles 
was running down the staircase. 


Charles went to bed with a bad headache, and 
woke with a worse. Nothing remained but to order 
his bill, and be off for London. Yet he could not 


go without taking a last farewell of the place itself. 
He was up soon after seven; and while the gowns- 
men were rising and in their respective chapels, he 
had been round Magdalen Walk and Christ Church 
Meadow. There were few or none to see him, 
wherever he went. The trees of the Water-walk 
were variegated, as beseemed the time of year, with 
a thousand hues, arching over his head, and screen- 
ing; his side. He reached Addison's Walk ; there 
he had been for the first time with his father, when 
he was coming into residence, just six years before 
to a day. He pursued it, and onwards still, till he 
came round in sight of the beautiful tower, which at 
length rose close over his head. The morning was 
frosty, and there was a mist ; the leaves flitted about ; 
all was in unison with the state of his feelings. He 
re-entered the monastic buildings, meeting with 
nothing but scouts with boxes of cinders, and old 
women carrying off the remains of the kitchen. He 
crossed to the Meadow, and walked steaddy down 
to the junction of the Cherwell with the Isis ; he 
then turned back. What thoughts came upon him ! 
for the last time ! There was no one to see him ; 
he threw his arms round the willows so dear to him, 
and kissed them ; he tore off some of their black 
leaves, and put them in his bosom. " I am like 
Undine," he said, " killing with a kiss. No one 
cares for me ; scarce a person knows me." He 
neared the Long Walk again. Suddenly looking ob- 
liquely into it, he saw a cap and gown ; he looked 
anxiously ; it was Jennings ; there was no mistake ; 
and his direction was towards him. He always had 


felt kindly towards him, in spite of his sternness, but 
he would not meet him for the world ; what was he 
to do? he stood behind a large elm, and let him 
pass ; then he set off again at a quick pace. When 
he had got some way, he ventured to turn his head 
round ; and he saw Jennings at the moment, by that 
sort of fatality or sympathy which is so common, 
turning round towards him. He hurried on, and 
soon found himself again at his inn. 

Strange as it may seem, though he had on the 
whole had as good success as Carlton in the " keen 
encounter of their wits" the night before, it had left 
an unsatisfactory effect on his mind. The time for 
action was come ; argument was past, as he had him- 
self said ; and to recur to argument was only to con- 
fuse the clearness of his apprehension of the truth. 
He began to question whether he really had evi- 
dence enough for the step he was taking, and the 
temptation assailed him that he was giving up this 
world without gaining the next. Carlton evidently 
thought him excited ; what if it were true ? Per- 
haps his convictions were, after all, a dream ; what 
did they rest upon? He tried to recal his best 
arguments, and could not. Was there, after all, any 
such thing as truth ? Was not one thing as good as 
another? At all events, could he not have served 
God well in his generation where he had been placed ? 
He recollected some lines in the Ethics of Aristotle, 
quoted by the philosopher from an old poet, where 
the poor outcast Philoctetes laments over his own 
stupid officiousness, as he calls it, which had been 
the cause of his misfortunes. Was he not a busy- 


body too ? Why could lie not let well alone ? Bet- 
ter men than he had lived and died in the English 
Church. And then what if, as Campbell had said, 
all his so-called convictions were to vanish just as 
he entered the Roman pale, as they had done on his 
father's death? He began to envy Sheffield; all 
had turned out well with him — a good class, a fel- 
lowship, merely or principally because he had taken 
things as they came, and not gone roaming after 
visions. He felt himself violently assaulted; but 
he was not deserted, not overpowered. His good 
sense, rather his good Angel, came to his aid; evi- 
dently he was in no way able to argue or judge at 
that moment ; the deliberate conclusions of years 
ought not to be set aside by the troubled thoughts of 
an hour. With an effort he put the whole subject 
from him, and addressed himself to his journey. 

How he got to Steventon he hardly recollected, 
but gradually he came to himself, and found himself 
in a first-class of the Great Western, proceeding 
rapidly towards London. He then looked about 
him to ascertain who his fellow-travellers were. The 
further compartment was full of passengers, who 
seemed to form one party, talking together with 
great volubility and glee. Of the three seats in his 
own part of the carriage, one only, that opposite to 
him, was filled. On taking a survey of the stranger, 
he saw a grave person passing or past the middle 
age ; his face had that worn or rather unplacid ap- 
pearance, which even slight physical suffering, if 
habitual, gives to the features, and his eyes were 
pale from study or other cause. Charles thought 


he had seen his face before, but he could not recol- 
lect where or when. But what most interested him 
was his dress, which was such as is rarely found in a 
travelling-companion. It was of a foreign character, 
and taken together with the small office-book he held 
in his hand, plainly shewed Charles that he was op- 
posite a Roman ecclesiastic. His heart beat, and he 
felt tempted to start from his seat ; then a sick feel- 
ing and a sinking came over him. He gradually 
grew calmer, and journeyed on some time in silence, 
longing yet afraid to speak. At length, on the train 
stopping at the station, he addressed a few words to 
him in French. His companion looked surprised, 
smiled, and in a hesitating saddish voice said that 
he was an Englishman. Charles made an awkward 
apology, and there was silence again. Their eyes 
sometimes met, and then moved slowly off each 
other, as if a mutual reconnoitering was in progress. 
At length it seemed to strike the stranger that he 
had abruptly stopped the conversation ; and, after 
apparently beating about for an introductory topic, he 
said, " Perhaps I can read you, sir, better than you 
can me. You are an Oxford man by your appear- 
ance." Charles assented. "A bachelor?" He was of 
near Master's standing. His companion, who did not 
seem in a humour for talking, proceeded to various 
questions about the University, as if out of civility. 
What colleges sent Proctors that year? Were the 
Taylor Professors appointed? Were they members 
of the Church of England ? Did the new Bishop of 
Bury keep his headship ? &c. &c. Some matter-of 
fact conversation followed, which came to nothing. 


Charles had so much to ask; his thoughts were 
busy, and his mind full. Here was a Catholic priest 
ready for his necessities ; yet the opportunity was 
likely to pass away, and nothing to come of it. 
After one or two fruitless efforts, he gave it up, and 
leant back in his seat. His fellow-traveller began, 
as quietly as he could, to say office. Time went 
forward, the steam was let off and put on ; the train 
stopped and proceeded, and the office was apparently 
finished ; the book vanished in a side-pocket. 

After a time Charles suddenly said, " How came 
you to suppose I was of Oxford 1" " Not entirely 
by your look and manner, for I saw you jump from 
the omnibus at Steventon ; but with that assistance 
it was impossible to mistake." " I have heard others 
say the same," said Charles ; " yet I can't myself 
make out how an Oxford man should be known 
from another." " Not only Oxford men, Cambridge 
men are known by their appearance ; soldiers, law- 
yers, beneficed clergymen ; indeed every class has 
its external indications to those who can read them." 
" I know persons," said Charles, " who believe that 
handwriting is an indication of calling and character." 
" I do not doubt it," replied the priest; " the gait 
is another ; but it is not all of us who can read so 
recondite a language. Yet a language it is, as really 
as hieroglyphics on an obelisk." "It is a fearful 
thought," said Charles with a sigh, " that we, as 
it were, exhale ourselves every breath we draw." 
The stranger assented ; "A man's moral being," 
he said, " is concentrated in each moment of his 
life ; it lives in the tips of his fingers, and the 


spring of his insteps. A very littie thing tries what 
a man is made of." 

" I think I must be speaking to a Catholic Priest," 
said Charles : when his question was answered in the 
affirmative, he went on hesitatingly to ask if what 
they had been speaking of did not illustrate the im- 
portance of faith ? " One did not see at first sight," 
he said, " how it was rational to maintain that so 
much depended on holding this or that doctrine, or 
a little more or a little less, but it might be a test of 
the heart." His companion looked pleased ; however, 
he observed, that " there was no ' more or less' in 
faith ; that either we believed the whole revealed mes- 
sage, or really we believed no part of it ; that we ought 
to believe what the Church proposed to us on the word 
of the Church." " Yet surely the so-called Evangeli- 
cal believes more than the Unitarian, and the High- 
Churchman than the Evangelical," objected Charles. 
'* The question," said his fellow-traveller, " is, whe- 
ther they submit their reason implicitly to that which 
they have received as God's word." Charles assented. 
" Would you say, then," he continued, " that the Uni- 
tarian really believes that which he professes to re- 
ceive as God's word, when he passes over and gets 
rid of so much that is in that word?" " Certainly 
not," said Charles. " And why?" " Because it is 
plain," said Charles, " that his ultimate standard of 
truth is not the Scripture, but, unconsciously to him- 
self, some view of things in his mind which is the 
measure of Scripture." " Then he believes himself, 
if we may so speak," said the priest, " and not the 
external word of God." " Certainty.** " Well, in 


like manner," lie continued, " do you think a person 
can have real faith in that which he admits to he the 
word of God, who passes by, without attempting to 
understand, such passages as, • the Church the pillar 
and ground of the truth ;' or, ' whosesoever sins ye 
remit, they are remitted ;' or, ' if any man is sick, let 
him call for the elders of the Church, and let them 
anoint him with oil?' " " Yes," said Charles ; "but, in 
fact, we do not profess to have faith in the mere text 
of Scripture. You know, sir," he added hesitatingly, 
" that the Anglican doctrine is to interpret Scrip- 
ture by the Church ; therefore we have faith, like 
Catholics, not in Scripture simply, but in the whole 
word committed to the Church, of which Scripture 
is a part." His companion smiled ; " How many," 
he asked, " so profess 1 But, waving this question, I 
understand what a Catholic means by saying that he 
goes by the voice of the Church ; it means, practically, 
by the voice of the first priest he meets. Every priest 
is the voice of the Church. This is quite intelligible. 
In matters of doctrine, he has faith in the word of 
any priest. But what, where, is that * word' of the 
Church which the persons you speak of believe in ? 
and when do they exercise their belief ? Is it not an 
undeniable fact, that so far from all Anglican clergy- 
men agreeing together in faith, — what the first says, 
the second will unsay 1 so that an Anglican cannot, if 
he would, have faith in them, and necessarily does, 
though he would not, choose between them. How, 
then, has faith a place in the religion of an Anglican ?" 
" Well," said Charles, " I am sure I know a good 
many persons, — and if you knew the Church of Eng- 


land as I do, you would not need me to tell you, — who, 
from knowledge of the Gospels, have an absolute 
conviction and an intimate sense of the reality of the 
sacred facts contained in them, which, whether you 
call it faith or not, is powerful enough to colour their 
whole being with its influence, and rules their heart 
and conduct as well as their imagination. I can't 
believe that these persons are out of God's favour ; 
yet, according to your account of the matter, they 
have not faith." " Do you think these persons be- 
lieve and practise all that is brought home to them 
as being in Scripture ?" asked his companion. <f Cer- 
tainly they do," answered Charles, " as far as man can 
judge." "Then perhaps they may be practising the 
virtue of faith ; if there are passages in it to which they 
are insensible, as about the sacraments, penance, and 
extreme unction, or about the See of Peter, I should 
in charity think that these passages had never been 
brought home or applied to their minds and con- 
sciences, — just as a Pope's Bull may be for a time 
unknown in a distant part of the Church. They 
may be in involuntary ignorance.* Yet I fear that, 
taking the whole nation, they are few among many." 
Charles said, this did not fully meet the difficulty ; 
faith, in the case of these persons, at least was not 
faith in the word of the Church. His companion 
would not allow this ; he said they received the 

* " Errantes invincibiliter circa aliquos articulos, et cre- 
dentes alios, non sunt formaliter haeretici, sed habent fidem 
supernaturalem, qua credunt veros articulos, atque adeo ex ea 
possunt procedere actus perfectse contritionis, quibus justifi- 
centur et salventur."— De Lugo de Fid. p. 16'9. 


Scripture on the testimony of the Church, that the 
Scripture represented the whole word of God com- 
mitted to the Church, and the like. 

Presently Charles said, " It is to me a great mys- 
tery how the English people, as a whole, is ever to 
have faith again ; is there evidence enough for faith ?" 
His new friend looked surprised and not overpleased ; 
" Surely," he said, " in matter of fact, a man may 
have more evidence for believing the Church to be the 
messenger of God, than he has for believing the four 
Gospels to be from God. If, then, he already believes 
the latter, why should he not believe the former?" 
" But the belief in the Gospels is a traditional be- 
lief," said Charles ; " that makes all the difference. 
I cannot see how a nation like England, which has 
lost the faith, ever can recover it. Hence, in the 
matter of conversion, Providence has generally visited 
simple and barbarous nations." "The converts of 
the Roman empire were, I suppose, a considerable 
exception," said the priest. " Still, it seems to me 
a great difficulty," answered Charles ; " I do not see, 
when the dogmatic structure is once broken down, 
how it is ever to be built up again. I fancy there is 
a passage somewhere in Carlyle's French Revolution on 
the subject, in which the author laments over the mad- 
ness of men's destroying what they could not replace, 
what it would take centuries and a combination of 
fortunate circumstances to reproduce, an external 
received creed. I am not denying, God forbid ! the 
objectivity of revelation, or saying that faith is a sort 
of happy and expedient delusion ; but, really, the 
evidence for revealed doctrine is so built up on pro- 


babilities, that I do not see what is to introduce it 
into a civilised community, where reason has been 
cultivated to the utmost, and argument is the test of 
truth. Many a man will say, ' Oh, that I had been 
educated a Catholic !' but he has not been ; and he 
finds himself unable, though wishing, to believe, for 
he has not evidence enough to subdue his reason. 
What is to make him believe?" His fellow-travel- 
ler had for some time shewn signs of uneasiness ; 
when Charles stopped, he said shortly, but quietly, 
" What is to make him believe ! the will, his will." 

Charles hesitated ; he proceeded ; " If there is 
evidence enough to believe Scripture, and we see 
that there is, I repeat, there is more than enough to 
believe the Church. The evidence is not in fault ; 
all it requires is to be brought home or applied to 
the mind; if belief does not then follow, the fault 
lies with the will." "Well," said Charles, " I think 
there is a general feeling among educated Anglicans, 
that the claims of the Roman Church do not rest on 
a sufficiently intellectual basis ; that the evidences, or 
notes, were well enough for a rude age, not for this. 
This is what makes me despair of the growth of Ca- 
tholicism." His companion looked round curiously 
at him, and then said quietly, " Depend upon it, there 
is quite evidence enough for a moral conviction that 
the Catholic or Roman Church, and none other, is the 
voice of God." "Do you mean," said Charles, with a 
beating heart, " that before conversion one can attain 
to a present abiding actual conviction of this truth ?" 
" I do not know," answered the other ; "but at least 
he may have habitual moral certainty; I mean, a 


conviction, and one only, steady, without rival con- 
viction, or even reasonable doubt, present to him 
when he is most composed and in his hours of soli- 
tude, and flashing on him from time to time, as 
through clouds, when he is in the world ; — a convic- 
tion to this effect, ' The Roman Catholic Church is 
the one only voice of God, the one only way of salva- 
tion.' " " Then you mean to say," said Charles, while 
his heart beat faster, " that such a person is under no 
duty to wait for clearer light." "He will not have, 
he cannot expect, clearer light before conversion. Cer- 
tainty in its highest sense is the reward of those who, 
by an act of the will, embrace the truth, when nature, 
like a coward, shrinks. You must make a venture ; 
faith is a venture before a man is a Catholic ; it is a 
grace after it. You approach the Church in the way 
of reason, you live in it in the light of the Spirit." 

Charles said that he feared there was a great 
temptation operating on many well-informed and 
excellent men, to find fault with the evidence for 
Catholicity, and to give over the search, on the ex- 
cuse that there were arguments on both sides. " It 
is not one set of men," answered his companion ; " it 
is the grievous deficiency in Englishmen altogether. 
Englishmen have many gifts, faith they have not. 
Other nations, inferior to them in many things, still 
have faith. Nothing will stand in place of it ; not 
a sense of the beauty of Catholicism, or of its awful- 
ness, or of its antiquity ; not an appreciation of the 
sympathy which it shews towards sinners ; not an 
admiration of the Martyrs and early Fathers, and a 
delight in their writings. Individuals may display 


a touching gentleness, or a conscientiousness which 
demands our reverence ; still, till they have faith, 
they have not the foundation, and their superstructure 
will fall. They will not he blessed, they will do 
nothing in religious matters, till they begin by an act 
of unreserved faith in the word of God, whatever it 
be ; till they go out of themselves ; till they cease 
to make something within them their standard, till 
they oblige their will to perfect what reason leaves, 
sufficient indeed, but incomplete. And when they 
shall recognise this defect in themselves, and try to 
remedy it, then they will recognise much more ; they 
will be on the road very shortly to be Catholics." 

There was nothing in all this exactly new to 
Charles ; but it was pleasant to hear it from the 
voice of another, and him a priest. Thus he had 
sympathy and authority, and felt he was restored to 
himself. The conversation stopped. After a while 
he disclosed to his new friend the errand which took 
him to London, which, after what Charles had al- 
ready been saying, could be no great surprise to him. 
The latter knew the Superior of San Michaele, and 
taking out a card, wrote upon it a few words of in- 
troduction for him. By this time they had reached 
Paddington ; and before the train had well stopped, 
the priest had taken his small carpet-bag from under 
his seat, wrapped his cloak around him, stepped out 
of the carriage, and was walking out of sight at a 
brisk pace. 



Reding naturally -wished to take the important step 
he was meditating as quietly as he could ; and had 
taken what he considered satisfactory measures for 
this purpose. But such arrangements often turn out 
very differently from their promise ; and so it was in 
his case. 

The Passionist House was in the eastern part of 
London ; so far well ; — and as he knew in the neigh- 
bourhood a respectable publisher in the religious 
line, with whom his father had dealt, he had written 
to him to bespeak a room in his house for the few 
days, which he trusted would suffice for the process 
of his reception. What was to happen to him after 
it, he left for the advice he might get from those in 
whose hands he found himself. It was now Wednes- 
day ; he hoped to have two days to prepare himself 
for his confession, and then he proposed to present 
himself before those who were to receive it. His 
better plan would have been, to have gone to the 
Religious House at once ; where doubtless the good 
fathers would have lodged him, secured him from 
intrusion, and given him the best advice how to pro- 
ceed. But we must indulge him, if, doing so great 
a work, he likes to do it in his own way ; nor must 
we be hard on him, though it be not the best way. 

On arriving at his destination, he saw in the de- 
portment of his host grounds for concluding that 
his coming was not only expected, but understood. 
Doubtless, then, the paragraph of the " Oxford Ga- 


zette" had been copied into the London papers ; nor 
did it relieve his unpleasant surprise, to find, as he 
passed to his room, that the worthy bibliopolist had 
a reading-room attached to his shop, which was far 
more perilous to his privacy than a coffee-room 
would have been. He was not obliged, however, to 
mix with the various parties who seemed to frequent 
it ; and he determined as far as possible to confine 
himself to his apartment. The rest of the day he 
employed in writing letters to friends ; his conversa- 
tion of the morning had tranquillised him ; he went 
to bed peaceful and happy, slept soundly, rose late, 
and, refreshed in mind and body, turned his thoughts 
to the serious duties of the day. 

Breakfast over, he gave a considerable time to 
devotional exercises, and then opening his writing- 
desk, addressed himself to his work. Hardly had 
he got into it, when his landlord made his appear- 
ance ; and, with many apologies for his intrusion, 
and a hope that he was not going to be impertinent, 
proceeded to inquire if Mr. Reding was a Catholic. 
" The question had been put to him, and he thought 
he might venture to solicit an answer from the per- 
son who could give the most authentic information." 
Here was an interruption, vexatious in itself, and 
perplexing in the form in which it came upon him ; 
it would be absurd to reply that he was on the point 
of becoming a Catholic, so he shortly answered in the 
negative. Mr. Mumford tben informed him that 
there were two friends of Mr. Reding' s below, who 
wished very much to have a few minutes' conversa- 
tion with him. Charles could make no intelligible 


objection to the request ; and in the course of a few 
minutes their knock was heard at the room-door. 

On his answering it, two persons presented them- 
selves, apparently both strangers to him. This, 
however, at the moment was a relief; for vague 
fears and surmises had begun to flit across his mind 
as to the faces which were to make their appearance. 
The younger of the two, who had round full cheeks, 
with a nose turned up towards the right eye, and 
a shrill voice, advanced confidently, and seemed to 
expect a recognition. It broke upon Charles that 
he had seen him before, but he could not tell where. 
" I ought to know your face," he said. " Yes, Mr. 
Reding," answered the person addressed, " you may 
recollect me at College." " Ah, I remember per- 
fectly," said Reding ; " Jack, the kitchen-boy at St. 
Saviour's." " Yes," said Jack ; " I came when young 
Tom was promoted into Dennis's place." Then he 
added, with a solemn shake of the head, " I have got 
promotion now." " So it seems, Jack," answered 
Reding ;" but what are you ? Speak." "Ah, sir," 
said Jack, " we must converse in a tone of befitting 
seriousness ;" and he added, in a deep inarticulate 
voice, his lips not being suffered to meet together, 
" Sir, I stand next to an Angel now." " A what? 
Angel? Oh, I know," cried Charles; "it's some 
sect ; the Sandemanians" — " Sandemanians !" in- 
terrupted Jack ; " we hold them in abhorrence ; they 
are levellers ; they bring in disorder and every evil 
work." '* I beg pardon, but I know it is some sect, 
though I don't recollect what. I've heard about it. 
Well, tell me, Jack, what are you ?" " I am," an- 


swered Jack, as if he were confessing at the tribunal 
of a Propraetor, "lama member of the Holy Ca- 
tholic Church." " That's right, Jack," said Reding ; 
" but it's not distinctive enough ; so are we all ; 
every one will say as much." " Hear me out, Mr. 
Reding, sir," answered Jack, waving his hand ; " hear 
me, but strike ; I repeat, I am a member of the Holy 
Catholic Church assembling in Huggermugger Lane." 
" Ah," said Charles, " I see ; that's what the ' gods' 
call you ; now, what do men?" " Men," said Jack, 
not understanding, however, the allusion — " men call 
us Christians professing the opinions of the late Rev. 
Edward Irving, B.D." " I understand perfectly 
now," said Reding; " Irvingites — I recollect" — 
" No, sir," he said, " not Irvingites ; we do not fol- 
low man ; we follow wherever the Spirit leads us ; 
we have given up Tongue. But I ought to intro- 
duce you to my friend, who is more than an Angel," 
he proceeded modestly, " who has more than the 
tongue of men and angels, being nothing short of an 
Apostle, sir. Mr. Reding, here's the Rev. Alexan- 
der Highfly. Mr. Highfly, this is Mr. Reding." 

Mr. Highfly was a man of gentlemanlike appear- 
ance and manner ; his language was refined, and his 
conduct was delicate ; so much so that Charles at 
once changed his tone in speaking to him. He 
came to Mr. Reding, he said, from a sense of duty ; 
and there was nothing in his conversation to clash 
with this profession. He explained that he had 
heard of Mr. Reding's being unsettled in his reli- 
gious views, and he would not lose the opportunity 
of attempting to obtain so valuable an accession to 



the cause to which he had dedicated himself. " I 
see," said Charles, smiling, " I am in the market." 
" It is the bargain of Glaucus with Diomede," an- 
swered Mr. Highfly ; " for which I am asking your 
co-operation. I am giving you the fellowship of 
apostles." " It is, I recollect, one of the charac- 
teristics of your body," said Charles, " to have an 
order of Apostles, in addition to Bishops, Priests, 
and Deacons." "Rather," said his visitor, "it is 
the special characteristic ; for we acknowledge the 
orders of the Church of England. We are but com- 
pleting the Church system by restoring the Apos- 
tolic College." "What I should complain of," said 
Charles, " were I at all inclined to listen to your 
claims, would be the very different views which dif- 
ferent members of your body put forward." " You 
must recollect, sir," answered Mr. Highfly, " that we 
are under divine teaching, and truth is but gradu- 
ally communicated to the Church. We do not pledge 
ourselves what we shall believe to-morrow, by any 
thing we say to-day." " Certainly," answered Red- 
ing, " things have been said to me by your teachers 
which I must suppose were only private opinions, 
though they seemed to be more." " But I was say- 
ing," said Mr. Highfly, " that at present we are 
restoring the Gentile Apostolate. The Church of 
England has Bishops, Priests, and Deacons, but a 
scriptural Church has more ; it is plain it ought to 
have Apostles. In Scripture Apostles had the su- 
preme authority, and the three Anglican orders were 
but subordinate to them." " I am disposed to agree 
•with you there," said Charles. Mr. Highfly looked 


surprised and pleased. "We are restoring," he said, 
" the Church to a more scriptural state ; perhaps, 
then, we may reckon on your co-operation in doing 
so ? We do not ask you to secede from the Estab- 
lishment, but to acknowledge the Apostolic autho- 
rity, to which all ought to submit." "But does it 
not strike you, Mr. Highfly," answered Reding, " that 
there is a body of Christians, and not an inconsider- 
able one, which maintains with you, and, what is 
more, has always preserved, that true and higher 
Apostolic succession in the Church ; a body, I mean, 
which, in addition to Episcopacy, believes that there 
is a standing ordinance above Episcopacy, and gives 
it the name of the Apostolate 1" " On the con- 
trary," answered Mr. Highfly, " I consider that we 
are restoring what has lain dormant ever since the 
time of St. Paul ; nay, I will say it is an ordinance 
which never has been carried into effect at all, though 
it was in the divine design from the first. You wdl 
observe that the Apostles were Jews ; but there never 
has been a Gentile Apostolate. St. Paul indeed was 
Apostle of the Gentiles, but the design begun in him 
has hitherto been frustrated. He went up to Jeru- 
salem against the solemn warning of the Spirit ; now 
we are raised up to complete that work of the Spirit, 
which was stopped by the inadvertence of the first 

Jack interposed : he should be very glad, he 
said, to know what religious persuasion it was, be- 
sides his own, which Mr. Reding considered to have 
preserved the succession of Apostles, as something 
distinct from Bishops. " It is quite plain whom I 


mean — the Catholics," answered Charles. " The 
Popedom is the true Apostolate, the Pope is the suc- 
cessor of the Apostles, particularly of St. Peter." 
"We are very well inclined to the Roman Catho- 
lics," answered Mr. Highfly, with some hesitation ; 
" we have adopted a great part of their ritual ; but 
we are not accustomed to consider that we resemble 
them in what is our characteristic and cardinal tenet." 
" Allow me to say it, Mr. Highfly," said Reding, 
"it is a reason for every Irvingite — I mean, every 
member of your persuasion — becoming a Catholic. 
Your own religious sense has taught you that there 
ought to be an Apostolate in the Church. You con- 
sider that the authority of the Apostles was not tem- 
porary, but essential and fundamental. What that 
authority was, we see in St. Paul's conduct towards 
St. Timothy. He placed him in the see of Ephesus, 
he sent him a charge, and, in fact, he was his over- 
seer or Bishop. He had the care of all the Churches. 
Now this is precisely the power which the Pope 
claims, and has ever claimed ; and, moreover, he has 
claimed it, as being the successor, and the sole pro- 
per successor, of the Apostles, though Bishops may 
be improperly such also.* And hence Catholics 
call him Vicar of Christ, Bishop of Bishops, and 
the like ; and, I believe, consider that he, and not the 
Bishop, is the true pastor or ruler of the Cburch — 
the source of jurisdiction, the judge of controversies, 

• " Successores sunt, sed ita ut potius Vicarii dicendi 
sint Apostolorum, quam successores ; contra, Romanus Pon- 
tifex, quia verus Petri successor est, nonnisi per quendam 
abusum ejus vicarius diceretur." — Zaccar. Antifebr. p. 130. 



and the centre of unity — as having the powers of the 
Apostles, and specially of St. Peter." Mr. Highfly 
kept silence. " Don't you think, then, it would be 
well," continued Charles, " that, before coming to con- 
vert me, you should first join the Catholic Church 1 
at least, you would urge your doctrine upon me with 
more authority if you came as a member of it. And 
I will tell you frankly, that you would find it easier 
to convert me to Catholicism, than to your present 
persuasion." Jack looked at Mr. Highfly, as if 
hoping for some decisive reply to what was a new 
view to him ; but Mr. Highfly took a different line. 
" Well, sir," he said, " I do not see that any good 
will come by our continuing the interview ; but your 
last remark leads me to observe that proselytism was 
not our object in coming here. We did not propose 
more than to inform you that a great work was going 
on, to direct your attention to it, and to invite your 
co-operation. We do not controvert ; we only wish 
to deliver our testimony, and then to leave the 
matter. I believe, then, we need not take up your 
valuable time longer." With that he got up, and 
Jack with him, and, with many courteous bows and 
smiles, which were duly responded to by Reding, 
the two visitors took their departure. 

" Well, I might have been worse off," thought 
Reding; "really they are gentle, well-mannered 
animals, after all. I might have been attacked with 
some of your furious Exeter-Hall beasts ; but now 
to business . . . What's that ?" he added. Alas, it 
was a soft, distinct tap at the door ; there was no 
mistake. "Who's there? come in !" he cried; upon 


which the door gently opened, and a young lady, 
not without personal attractions, presented herself. 
Charles started up with vexation ; hut there was no 
help for it, and he was obliged to hand her a chair, 
and then to wait all expectation, or rather all impa- 
tience, to be informed of her mission. For a while 
she did not speak, but sat with her head on one 
side, looking at her parasol, the point of which she 
fixed on the carpet, while she slowly described a 
circumference with the handle. At length she asked, 
without raising her eyes, whether it was true, — and 
she spoke slowly, and in what is called a spiritual 
tone, — whether it was true, the information had been 
given her, that Mr. Reding, the gentleman she had 
the honour of addressing — whether it was true, that 
he was in search of a religion more congenial to his 
feelings than that of the Church of England. " Mr. 
Reding could not give her any satisfaction on the 
subject of her inquiry ;" — he answered shortly, and 
had some difficulty in keeping from rudeness in his 
tone. The interrogation, she went on to say, per- 
haps might seem impertinent ; but she had a motive. 
Some dear sisters of hers were engaged in organis- 
ing a new religious body, and Mr. Reding' s acces- 
sion, counsel, assistance, would be particularly valu- 
able ; the more so, because as yet they had not 
any gentleman of University-education among them. 
" May I ask," said Charles, " the name of the in- 
tended persuasion?" "The name," she answered, 
" is not fixed ; indeed, this is one of the points on 
which we should covet the privilege of the advice 
of a gentleman so well qualified as Mr. Reding to 


assist us in our deliberations." " And your tenets, 
ma'am?" " Here too," she replied, " there is much 
still to be done ; the tenets are not fixed either, that 
is, they are but sketched ; and we shall prize your 
suggestions much. Nay, you will of course have 
the opportunity, as you would have the right, to 
nominate any doctrine to which you may be espe- 
cially inclined." Charles did not know how to an- 
swer to so liberal an offer. She continued : " Per- 
haps it is right, Mr. Reding, that I should tell you 
something more about myself personally. I was 
born in the communion of the Church of England ; 
for a while I was a member of the New Connex- 
ion ; and at present," she added, still with droop- 
ing head and languid sing-song voice, " at present, 
Mr. Reding, I am a Plymouth brother." It got too 
absurd ; and Charles, who had for an instant been 
amused, now became full of the one thought, how to 
get her out of the room. 

It was obviously left to her to keep up the con- 
versation ; so she said presently, " We are all for a 
pure religion." " From what you tell me," said 
Charles, " I gather that every member of your new 
community is allowed to name one or two doctrines 
of his own." " We are all scriptural," she made 
answer, " and therefore are all one ; we may differ, 
but we agree. Still it is so, as you say, Mr. Reding. 
I'm for election and assurance ; our dearest friend is 
for perfection ; and another sweet sister is for the 
second advent. But we desire to include among us 
all souls who are thirsting after the river of life, 
whatever their personal views. I believe you are 


partial to sacraments and ceremonies ?" Charles 
tried to cut short the interview by denying that he 
had any religion to seek after, or any decision to 
make ; but it was easier to end the conversation 
than the visit. He threw himself back in his chair 
in despair, and half closed his eyes. " Oh, those 
good Irvingites," he thought, " blameless men, who 
came only to protest, and vanished at the first word 
of opposition ; but now thrice has the church-clock 
struck the quarters since her entrance, and I don't 
see why she's not to stop here as long as it goes on 
striking, since she has stopped so long. She has not 
in her the elements of progress and decay. She'll 
never die ; what is to become of me ?" 

Nor was she doomed to find a natural death ; 
for, when the case seemed hopeless, a noise was 
heard on the staircase, and, with scarcely the apo- 
logy for a knock, a wild gawky man made his ap- 
pearance, and at once cried out, " I hope, sir, it's 
not a bargain yet ; I hope it's not too late ; dis- 
charge this young woman, Mr. Reding, and let me 
teach you the old truth, which never has been re- 
pealed." There was no need of discharging her ; 
for, as kindly as she had unfolded her leaves and 
flourished in the sun of Reding's forbearance, so did 
she at once shrink and vanish — one could hardly 
tell how — before the rough accents of the intruder ; 
and Charles suddenly found himself in the hands of 
a new tormentor. " This is intolerable," he said to 
himself; and jumping up, he cried, " Sir, excuse me, 
I am particularly engaged this morning, and I must 
beg to decline the favour of your visit." " What 


did you say, sir V said the stranger ; and, taking a 
note-book and pencil from his pocket, he began to 
look up in Charles's face and -write down his words, 
saying half aloud, as he wrote, " declines the favour 
of my visit." Then he looked up again, keeping his 
pencil upon his paper, and said, " Now, sir." Red- 
ing moved towards him, and spreading his arms as 
one drives sheep and poultry in one direction, he 
repeated, looking towards the door, " Really, sir, 
I feel the honour of your call ; but another day, sir» 
another day. It is too much, too much." " Too 
much ?" said the intruder ; " and I waiting below 
so long ! That pretty girl has been good part of an 
hour here, and now you can't give me five minutes, 
sir." " "Why, sir," answered Charles, " I am sure 
you are come on an errand as fruitless as hers ; and 
I am sick of these religious discussions, and want to 
be to myself, and to save you trouble." " Sick of 
religious discussion," said the stranger to himself, as 
he wrote down the words in his note-book. Charles 
did not deign to notice his act or to explain his own 
expression ; he stood prepared to renew his action 
of motioning him to the door. His tormentor then 
said, " You may like to know my name ; it is Ze- 

Vexed as Reding was, he felt that he had no right 
to visit the tediousness of his former visitor upon his 
present ; so he forced himself to reply, " Zerubbabel ; 
indeed ; and is Zerubbabel your Christian name, sir, 
or your surname ?" " It is both at once, Mr. Red- 
ing," answered Zerubbabel, " or rather, I have no 
Christian name, and Zerubbabel is my one Jewish 



designation." " You are come, then, to inquire whe- 
ther I am likely to become a Jew." " Stranger 
things have happened," answered his visitor; " for 
instance, I myself was once a deacon in the Church 
of England." " Then you're not a Jew ?" said 
Charles. " I am a Jew by choice," he said ; " after 
much prayer and study of Scripture, I have come 
to the conclusion, that, as Judaism was the first reli- 
gion, so it's to be the last. Christianity, I consider 
an episode in the history of revelation." " You are 
not likely to have many followers in such a belief," 
said Charles ; " we are all for progress now, not for 
retrograding." " I differ from you, Mr. Reding," 
replied Zerubbabel ; " see what the Establishment is 
doing; it has sent a Bishop to Jerusalem." " That 
is rather with a view of making the Jews Christians, 
than the Christians Jews," said Reding. Zerubbabel 
wrote down : " thinks Bishop of Jerusalem is to con- 
vert the Jews ;" then, " I differ from you, sir ; on the 
contrary, I fancy the excellent Bishop has in view to 
revive the distinction between Jew and Gentile, which 
is one step towards the supremacy of the former ; for 
if the Jews have a place at all in Christianity, as 
Jews, it must be the first place." Charles thought 
he had better let him have his talk out ; so Zerub- 
babel proceeded : " The good Bishop in question 
knows well that the Jew is the elder brother of the 
Gentile, and it is his special mission to restore a 
Jewish episcopate to the See of Jerusalem. The 
Jewish succession has been suspended since the time 
of the Apostles. And now you see the reason of my 
calling on you, Mr. Reding. It is reported that you 


lean towards the Catholic Church ; but I wish to sug- 
gest to you that you have mistaken the centre of 
unity. The See of James at Jerusalem is the true 
centre, not the See of Peter at Rome. Peter's power 
is a usurpation on James's. I consider the present 
Bishop of Jerusalem the true Pope. The Gentiles 
have been in power too long; it is now the Jews' 
turn." " You seem to allow," said Charles, " that 
there ought to be a centre of unity and a Pope." 
" Certainly," said Zerubbabel, " and a ritual too, but 
it should be the Jewish. I am collecting subscrip- 
tions for the rebuilding of the Temple on Mount 
Moriah ; I hope too to negotiate a loan, and we shall 
have Temple stock, yielding, I calculate, at least four 
per cent." " It has hitherto been thought a sin," 
said Reding, " to attempt rebuilding the Temple. 
According to you, Julian the Apostate went the bet- 
ter way to work." " His motive was wrong, sir," 
answered the other ; " but his act was good. The 
way to convert the Jews is, first to accept their rites. 
This is one of the great discoveries of this age. 
We must make the first step towards them. For 
myself, I have adopted all, which the present state of 
their religion renders possible. And I don't despair 
to see the day when bloody sacrifices will be offered 
on the Temple Mount, as of old." Here he came to 
a pause ; and Charles making no reply, he said, in a 
brisk off-hand manner, " May I not hope you will 
give your name to this religious object, and adopt the 
old ritual ? The Catholic is quite of yesterday com- 
pared with it." Charles answering in the negative, 
Zerubbabel wrote down in his book : " Refuses to 


take part in our scheme ;" and disappeared from the 
room, as suddenly as he entered it. 


Charles's trials were not at an end ; and we suspect 
the reader will give a shudder at the news, as hav- 
ing a very material share in the infliction. Yet the 
reader's case has this great alleviation, that he takes 
up this narrative in an idle hour, and Charles en- 
countered the reality in a very busy and anxious one. 
So, however, it was ; not any great time elapsed after 
the retreat of Zerubbabel, when his landlord again 
appeared at the door. He assured Mr. Reding that 
it was no fault of his that the last two persons had 
called on him ; that the lady had slipped by him, and 
the gentleman had forced his way ; but that he now 
really did wish to solicit an interview for a personage 
of great literary pretensions, who sometimes dealt 
with him, and who had come from the West End 
for the honour of an interview with Mr. Reding. 
Charles groaned, but only one reply was possible ; 
the day was already wasted ; and with a sort of dull 
resignation he gave permission for the introduction 
of the stranger. 

It was a pasty-faced man of about thirty-five, who, 
when he spoke, arched his eyebrows, and had a pe- 
culiar smile. He began by expressing his appre- 
hension that Mr. Reding must have been wearied by 
impertinent and unnecessary visitors — visitors with- 


out intellect, who knew no better than to obtrude 
their fanaticism on persons who did but despise it. 
" I know more about the Universities," he continued, 
" than to suppose that any congeniality can exist 
between their members and the mass of religious 
sectarians. You have had very distinguished men 
among you, sir, at Oxford, of very various schools, 
yet all able men, and distinguished in the pursuit of 
Truth, though they have arrived at contradictory 
opinions." Not knowing what he was driving at, 
Reding remained in an attitude of expectation. " I 
belong," he continued, " to a Society which is devoted 
to the extension among all classes of the pursuit of 
Truth. Any philosophical mind, Mr. Reding, must 
have felt deep interest in your own party in the 
University. Our Society in fact considers you to be 
distinguished Confessors in that all-momentous oc- 
cupation ; and I have thought I could not pay your- 
self individually, whose name has lately honourably 
appeared in the papers, a better compliment than 
to get you elected a member of our Truth Society. 
And here is your diploma," he added, handing a sheet 
of paper to him. Charles glanced his eye over it; 
it was a paper, part engraving, part print, part manu- 
script. An emblem of truth was in the centre, re- 
presented not by a radiating sun or star, as might 
be expected, but as the moon under total eclipse, 
surrounded, as by cherub faces, by the heads of 
Socrates, Cicero, Julian, Abelard, Luther, Benjamin 
Franklin, and Lord Brougham. Then followed some 
sentences to the effect, that the London Branch As- 
sociation of the British and Foreign Truth Society, 


having evidence of the zeal in the pursuit of Truth of 
Charles Reding, Esq., member of Oxford University, 
had unanimously elected him into their number, and 
had assigned him the dignified and responsible office 
of associate and corresponding member. " I thank 
the Truth Society very much," said Charles, when 
he got to the end of the paper, " for this mark of 
their good will : yet I regret to have scruples about 
accepting it, till some of the patrons are changed, 
whose heads are prefixed to the diploma. For in- 
stance, I do not like to be under the shadow of the 
Emperor Julian." "You would respect his love of 
Truth, I presume," said Mr. Batts. "Not much, I 
fear," said Charles, " seeing it did not hinder him 
from deliberately embracing error." " No, not so," 
answered Mr. Batts ; " from embracing what he 
thought Truth ; and Julian, I conceive, cannot be 
said to have deserted the Truth, because, in fact, he 
always was in pursuit of it." " I fear," said Reding, 
" there is a very serious difference between your 
principles and my own on this point." "Ah, my 
dear sir, a little attention to our principles will re- 
move it," said Mr. Batts: "let me beg your accept- 
ance of this little pamphlet, in which you will find 
some fundamental truths stated, almost in the way 
of aphorisms. I wish to direct your attention to 
page 8, where they are drawn out." Charles turned 
to the page, and read as follows : 

" On the pursuit of Truth. 

1 . It is uncertain whether Truth exists. 

2. It is certain that it cannot be found. 

3. It is a folly to boast of possessing it. 


4. Man's work and duty, as man, consists, not in 
possessing, but in seeking it. 

5. His happiness and true dignity consists in the 

6. The pursuit of Truth is an end, to be engaged 
in for its own sake. 

7. As philosophy is the love, not the possession 
of wisdom, so religion is the love, not the pos- 
session, of Truth. 

8. As Catholicism begins with faith, so Protest- 
antism ends with inquiry. 

9. As there is disinterestedness in seeking, so is 
there selfishness in claiming to possess. 

10. The martyr of Truth is he who dies profess- 
ing that it is a shadow. 

11. A life-long martyrdom is this, to be ever 

12. The fear of error is the bane of inquiry." 

Charles did not get further than these, but others 
followed of a similar character. He returned the 
pamphlet to Mr. Batts. * I see enough," he said, " of 
the opinions of the Truth Society, to admire their 
ingenuity and originality, but, excuse me, not their 
good sense. It is impossible I should subscribe to 
what is so plainly opposed to Christianity." Mr. 
Batts looked annoyed. " We have no wish to oppose 
Christianity," he said ; " we only wish Christianity 
not to oppose us. It is very hard that we may 
not go our own way, when we are quite willing that 
others should go theirs. It seems imprudent, I con- 
ceive, in this age, to represent Christianity as hostile 


to the progress of the mind, and to turn into ene- 
mies of" revelation those who do sincerely wish to 
1 live and let live.' " " But contradictions cannot be 
true," said Charles : " if Christianity says that Truth 
' can be found, it must be an error to state that it can- 
not be found." " I conceive it to be intolerant," 
persisted Mr. Batts : " you will grant, I suppose, 
that Christianity has nothing to do with astronomy 
or geology: why, then, should it be allowed to in- 
terfere with philosophy ?" It was useless proceed- 
ing in the discussion ; Charles repressed the answer 
which rose on his tongue of the essential connexion 
of philosophy with religion ; a silence ensued of se- 
veral minutes, and Mr. Batts at length took the hint, 
for he rose with a disappointed air, and wished him 
good morning. 

It mattered little now whether he was left to 
himself or not, except that conversation harassed 
and fretted him ; for as to turning his mind to the 
subjects which were to have been his occupation 
that morning, it was by this time far too much 
wearied and dissipated to undertake them. On Mr. 
Batts' s departure, then, he did not make the attempt, 
but sat before the fire, dull and depressed, and in 
danger of relapsing into the troubled thoughts from 
which his railroad companion had extricated him. 
When, then, at the end of half an hour, a new knock 
was heard at the door, he admitted the postulant 
with a calm indifference, as if fortune had now done 
her worst, and he had nothing to fear. A middle- 
aged man made his appearance, sleek and plump, 
who seemed to be in good circumstances, and to have 


profited by them. His glossy black dress, in con- 
trast with the pink colour of his face and throat, for 
he wore no collars, and his staid and pompous bear- 
ing, added to his rapid delivery, when he spoke, 
gave him much the look of a farm-yard turkey-cock, 
in the eyes of any one who was less disgusted with 
seeing new faces than Reding was at that moment. 
The new-comer looked sharply at him as he en- 
tered. " Your most obedient," he said abruptly ; 
" you seem in low spirits, my dear sir ; but sit 
down, Mr. Reding, and give me the opportunity of 
offering to you a little good advice. You may guess 
what I am by my appearance : I speak for myself ; 
I will say no more ; I can be of use to you. Mr. 
Reding," he continued, pulling his chair towards 
him, and putting out his hand as if he was going to 
paw him, " have not you made a mistake, in think- 
ing it necessary to go to the Romish Church for a 
relief of your religious difficulties ?" "You have not 
yet heard from me, sir," answered Charles gravely, 
" that I have any difficulties at all. Excuse me if 
I am abrupt ; I have had many persons calling on 
me with your errand. It is very kind of you, but 
I don't want advice ; I was a fool to come here." 
" Well, my dear Mr. Reding, but listen to me," an- 
swered his persecutor, spreading out the fingers of 
his right hand, and opening his eyes wide ; " I am 
right, I believe, in apprehending that your reason for 
leaving the Establishment is, that you cannot carry 
out the surplice in the pulpit and the candlesticks on 
the table. Now, don't you do more than you need. 
Pardon me, but you are like a person who should 


turn the Thames in upon his house, when he merely 
wanted his door-steps scrubbed. Why become a 
convert to Popery, when you can obtain your object 
in a cheaper and better way 1 Set up for yourself, 
my dear sir — set up for yourself; form a new de- 
nomination, sixpence will do it; and then you may 
have your surplice and candlesticks to your heart's 
content, without denying the gospel, or running into 
the horrible abominations of the Scarlet Woman." 
And he sat upright in his chair, with his hands flat 
on his extended knees, watching with a self-satisfied 
air the effect of his words upon Reding. 

" I have had enough of this," said poor Charles ; 
" you, indeed, are but one of a number, sir, and 
would say you had nothing to do with the rest ; but 
I cannot help regarding you as the fifth, or sixth, or 
seventh person — I can't count them — who has been 
with me tbis morning, giving me, though with the 
best intentions, advice which has not been asked for. 
I don't know you, sir: you have no introduction to 
me ; you have not even told me your name. It is 
not usual to discourse on such personal matters with 
strangers. Let me, then, thank you first for your 
kindness in coming, and next for the additional kind- 
ness of going." And Charles rose up. 

His visitor did not seem inclined to move, or 
to notice what he had said. He stopped a while, 
opened his handkerchief with much deliberation, and 
blew his nose ; then he continued ; " Kitchens is 
my name, sir ; Dr. Kitchens : your state of mind, 
Mr. Reding, is not unknown to me ; you are at 
present under the influence of the old Adam, and 


indeed in a melancholy way. I was not unprepared 
for it ; and I have put in my pocket a little tract, 
which I shall press upon you with all the Christian 
solicitude which brother can shew towards brother. 
Here it is ; I have the greatest confidence in it ; 
perhaps you have heard the name ; it is known as 
Kitchens' s Spiritual Elixir. The Elixir has enlight- 
ened millions ; and, I will take on me to say, will 
convert you in twenty-four hours. Its operation 
is mild and pleasurable, and its effects are mar- 
vellous, prodigious, though it does not consist of 
more than eight duodecimo pages. Here's a list of 
testimonies to some of the most remarkable cases. 
I have known one hundred and two cases myself, 
in which it effected a saving change in six hours ; 
seventy -nine in which its operation took place in 
as few as three ; and twenty-seven where conversion 
followed instantaneously after the perusal. At once, 
poor sinners, who five minutes before had been like 
the demoniac in the gospel, were seen sitting ' clothed* 
and in their right mind.' Thus I speak within the 
mark, Mr. Reding, when I say I will warrant a change 
in you in twenty-four hours. I have never known 
but one instance in which it seemed to fad, and that 
was the case of a wretched old man, who held it in 
his hand a whole day in dead silence, without any 
apparent effect ; but here exceptio probat regulam, 
for on further inquiry we found he could not read. 
So the tract was slowly administered to him by an- 
other person ; and before it was finished, I protest to 
you, Mr. Reding, he fell into a deep and healthy 
slumber, perspired profusely, and woke up at the 


end of twelve hours a new creature, perfectly new, 
bran new, and fit for heaven, whither he went in the 
course of the week. We are now making further 
experiments on its operation, and we find that even 
separate leaves of the tract have a proportionate 
effect. And, what is more to your own purpose, it 
is quite a specific in the case of Popery. It directly 
attacks the peccant matter, and all the trash about 
sacraments, saints, penance, purgatory, and good 
works is dislodged from the soul at once." 

Charles remained silent and grave, as one who 
was likely suddenly to break out into some strong 
act, rather than to condescend to any further parley- 
ing. Dr. Kitchens proceeded : " Have you attended 
any of the lectures delivered against the Mystic Ba- 
bylon, or any of the public disputes which have been 
carried on in so many places ? My dear friend Mr. 
Makanoise contested ten points with thirty Jesuits — 
a good half of the Jesuits in London — and beat them 
upon all. Or have you heard any of the luminaries 
of Exeter Hall ? There is Mr. Gabb ; he is a Boan- 
erges, a perfect Niagara, for his torrent of words ; 
such momentum in his delivery ; it is as rapid as it's 
strong ; it's enough to knock a man down. He can 
speak seven hours running without fatigue ; and last 
year he went through England, delivering, through 
the length and breadth of the land, one, and one 
only, awful protest against the apocalyptic witch of 
Endor. He began at Devonport and ended at Ber- 
wick, and surpassed himself on every delivery. At 
Berwick, his last exhibition, the effect was perfectly 
tremendous ; a friend of mine heard it ; he assures 


me, incredible as it may appear, that it shattered 
some glass in a neighbouring house ; and two priests 
of Baal, who were with their day-school within a 
quarter of a mile of Mr. Gabb, were so damaged by 
the mere echo, that one forthwith took to his bed, 
and the other has walked on crutches ever since." 
He stopped a while, then he continued : " And what 
was it, do you think, Mr. Reding, which had this 
effect on them? Why, it was Mr. Gabb's notion 
about the sign of the beast in the Revelation : he 
proved, Mr. Reding — it was the most original hit in 
his speech — he proved that it was the sign of the 
Cross, the material Cross." 

The time at length was come ; Reding could not 
bear more ; and, as it happened, his visitor's offence 
gave him the means, as well as a cause, for punish- 
ing him. " Oh," he said suddenly, " then I sup- 
pose, Dr. Kitchens, you can't tolerate the Cross?" 
" Oh, no ; tolerate it!" answered Dr. Kitchens ; " it 
is Antichrist." " You can't bear the sight of it, I 
suspect, Dr. Kitchens 1" " I can't endure it, sir ; 
what true Protestant can?" "Then look here," 
said Charles, taking a small Crucifix out of his writ- 
ing-desk ; and he held it before Dr. Kitchens' face. 
Dr. Kitchens at once started on his feet, and re- 
treated. " What's that ?" he said, and his face 
flushed up and then turned pale ; " what's that? it's 
the thing itself ;" and he made a snatch at it. " Take 
it away, Mr. Reding ; it's an idol ; I cannot endure 
it ; take away the thing." " I declare," said Red- 
ing to himself, " it really has power over him;" 
and he still confronted it to Dr. Kitchens, while he 


kept it out of Dr. Kitchens's reach. " Take it away, 
Mr. Reding, I beseech you," cried Dr. Kitchens, still 
retreating, while Charles still pressed on him ; "take 
it away, it's too much. Oh, oh! Spare me, spare 
me, Mr. Reding! — nehushtan — an idol! — oh, you 
young antichrist, you devil ! — 'tis He, 'tis He — tor- 
ment ! — spare me, Mr. Reding !" And the miserable 
man began to dance about, still eyeing the sacred sign, 
and motioning it from him. Charles now had victory 
in his hands : there was, indeed, some difficulty in 
steering Dr. Kitchens to the door from the place 
where he had been sitting ; but that once effected, 
he opened it with violence, and throwing himself on 
the staircase, he began jumping down two or three 
steps at a time, with such forgetfulness of every thing 
but his own terror, that he came plump upon two 
persons, who, in rivalry of each other, were in the 
act of rushing up ; and while he drove one against 
the rail, he fairly rolled the other to the bottom. 


Charles threw himself on his chair, burying the 
Crucifix in his bosom, quite worn out with his long 
trial and the sudden exertion in which it had just 
now been issuing. When a noise was heard at his 
door, and knocks succeeded, he took no further 
notice than to plant his feet on the fender, and bury 
his face in his hands. The summons at first was 

B B 


apparently from one person only, but his delay in 
answering it gave time for the arrival of another ; 
and there was a brisk succession of alternate knocks 
from the two, which Charles let take its course. At 
length one of the rival candidates for admission, 
bolder than the other, slowly opened the door; 
when the other, who had impetuously scrambled 
up stairs after his fall, rushed in before him, crying 
out, " One word for the New Jerusalem I" " In 
charity," said Reding, without changing his attitude, 
" in charity, leave me alone. You mean it well, but 
I don't want you, sir ; I don't indeed. I've had Old 
Jerusalem here already, and Jewish Apostles, and 
Gentile Apostles, and free inquiry, and fancy reli- 
gion, and Exeter Hall. What have I done? why 
can't I die out in peace ? My dear sir, do go ! I 
can't see you ; I'm worn out." And he rose up 
and advanced towards him. " Call again, dear sir, 
if you are bent on talking with me ; but excuse me, 
I really have had enough of it for one day. No 
fault of yours, my dear sir, that you have come the 
sixth or seventh." And he opened the door for 
him. " A madman nearly threw me down as I was 
coming up," said the person addressed, in some agi- 
tation. " Ten thousand pardons for his rudeness, 
my dear sir, ten thousand pardons, but allow me ;" 
and he bowed him out of the room. He then turned 
round to the other stranger, who had stood by in 
silence : " And you too, sir — is it possible !" His 
countenance changed to extreme surprise; it was 
Mr. Malcolm. Charles's thoughts flowed in a Dew 
current, and his tormentors were suddenly forgotten. 


The history of Mr. Malcolm's calling was simple. 
He had always been a collector of old books, and 
had often taken advantage of the stores of Charles's 
landlord in adding to his library. Passing through 
London to the Eastern Counties rail, he happened 
to call in ; and as the worthy bookseller was not 
behind his own reading-room in the diffusion of gos- 
sip, he learned that the Mr. Reding, who was on the 
point of seceding from the Establishment, was at that 
moment above stairs. He waited with impatience 
through Dr. Kitchens' s visit, and even then found 
himself, to his no small annoyance, in danger of 
being outstripped by the good Swedenborgian. 

" How d'ye do, Cbarles ?" he said at length, 
with not a little stiffness in his manner, while Charles 
had no less awkwardness in receiving him ; " you 
have been holding a levee this morning ; I thought 
I should never get to see you. Sit you down ; let 
us both sit down, and let me at last have a word 
or two with you." In spite of the diversified trial 
Charles had sustained from strangers that morning, 
there was no one perhaps whom he would have less 
desired to see than Mr. Malcolm. He could not 
help associating him with his father, yet he felt no 
opening of heart towards him, or respect for his 
judgment. His feeling was a mixture of prescrip- 
tive fear and friendliness, attachment from old asso- 
ciations, and desire of standing well with him, but 
neither confidence nor real love. He coloured up 
and felt guilty, yet without a clear understanding 
why. " Well, Charles Reding," he said, " I think we 
know each other well enough for you to have given 


me a hint of what was going on as regards you." 
Charles said he had written to him only the evening 
before. " Ah, when there was not time to answer 
your letter," said Mr. Malcolm. Charles said he 

wished to spare so kind a friend, he bungled, 

and could not finish his sentence. " A friend, who, 
of course, could give no advice," said Mr. Malcolm, 
dryly. Presently he said, " Were those people some 
of your new friends who were calling on you ? they 
have kept me in the shop this three quarters of an 
hour ; and the fellow who has just come down, nearly 
threw me over the baluster." " Oh no, sir, I know 
nothing of them ; they were the most unwelcome of 
intruders." " As some one else seems to be," said 
Mr. Malcolm. Charles was very much hurt ; the 
more so, because he had nothing to say ; he kept 
silence. " Well, Charles," said Mr. Malcolm, not 
looking at him, " I have known you from this high ; 
more, from a child in arms. A frank, open boy you 
were ; I don't know what has spoiled you. These Je- 
suits, perhaps. . . . It was not so in your father's life- 
time." " My dear sir," said Charles, " it pierces me 
to the heart to hear you talk so. You have indeed 
always been most kind to me. If I have erred, it 
has been an error of judgment ; and I am very sorry 
for it, and hope you will forgive it. I acted for the 
best ; but I have been, as you must feel, in a most try- 
ing situation. My mother has known what I was 
contemplating this year past." " Trying situation ; 
fudge ! What have you to do with situations ? I could 
have told you a great deal about these Catholics ; I 
know all about them. Error of judgment ; don't tell 


me. I know how these things happen quite well. I 
have seen such things before ; only I thought you a 
more sensible fellow. There was young Dalton of 
St. Cross ; he goes abroad, and falls in with a smooth 
priest, who persuades the silly fellow that the Ca- 
tholic Church is the ancient and true Church of 
England, the only religion for a gentleman ; he is 
introduced to a Count this, and a Marchioness that, 
and returns a Catholic. There was another; what 
was his name? I forget it, of a Berkshire family. 
He is smitten with a pretty face ; nothing will serve 
but he must marry her; but she's a Catholic, and 
can't marry a heretic ; so he, forsooth, gives up the 
favour of his uncle, and his prospects in the county, 
for his fair Juliet. There was another — but it's 
useless going on. And now I wonder what has taken 

All this was the best justification for Charles's 
not having spoken to Mr. Malcolm on the subject. 
That gentleman had had his own experience of 
thirty or forty years, and, like some great phi- 
losophers, he made that personal experience of his 
the decisive test of the possible and the true. " I 
know them," he continued — " I know them ; a set 
of hypocrites and sharpers. I could tell you such 
stories of what I fell in with abroad. Those priests 
are not to be trusted. Did you ever know a 
priest?" "No," answered Charles. " Did you ever 
see a Popish chapel ?" "No." " Do you know any 
thing of Catholic books, Catholic doctrine, Catholic 
morality ? I warrant it, not much." Charles looked 
very uncomfortable. " Then what makes you go to 


them ?" Charles did not know what to say. " Silly 
boy," he went on, " you have not a word to say for 
yourself; it's all idle fancy. You are going as a 
bird to the fowler." 

Reding began to rouse himself ; he felt he ought 
to say something ; he felt that silence would tell 
against him. "Dear sir," he answered, "there's 
nothing but may be turned against one, if a person 
is so minded. Now, do think ; had I known this 
or that priest, you would have said at once, 'Ah, 
he came over you.' If I had been familiar with Ca- 
tholic chapels, ' I was allured by the singing or the 
incense.' What can I have done better than keep 
myself to myself, go by my best reason, consult the 
friends whom I happened to find around me, as I 
have done, and wait in patience till I was sure of 
my convictions ?" " Ah, that's the way with you 
youngsters," said Mr. Malcolm ; " you all think you 
are so right ; you do think so admirably, that older 
heads are worth nothing to the like of you. Well," 
he went on, putting on his gloves, " I see I am not 
in the way to persuade you. Poor dear Charlie, I 
grieve for you ; what would your poor father have 
said, had he lived to see it ? Poor Reding ; he 
has been spared this. But perhaps it would not 
have happened. I know what the upshot will be ; 
you will come back — come back you will to a dead 
certainty. We shall see you back, foolish boy, after 
you have had your gallop over your ploughed field. 
Well, well; better than running wild. You must 
have your hobby ; it might have been a worse ; you 
might have run through your money. But perhaps 


you'll be giving it away, as it is, to some artful 
priest. It's grievous, grievous ; your education 
thrown away, your prospects ruined, your poor 
mother and sisters left to take care of themselves. 
And you don't say a word to me." And he began 
musing. " A troublesome world ; good bye, Charles ; 
you are high and mighty now, and are in full sail : 
you may come to your father's friend some day in a 
different temper. Good bye." There was no help 
for it ; Charles's heart was full, but his head was 
wearied and confused, and his spirit sunk : for all 
these reasons he had not a word to say, and seemed 
to Mr. Malcolm either stupid or close. He could 
but wring warmly Mr. Malcolm's reluctant hand, 
and accompany him down to the street-door. 


"This will never do," said Charles, as he closed 
the door, and ran up stairs ; " here is a day wasted, 
worse than wasted, wasted partly on strangers, partly 
on friends ; and it's hard to say in which case a more 
thorough waste. I ought to have gone to the Con- 
vent at once." The thought flashed into his mind, 
and he stood over the fire dwelling on it. " Yes," 
he said, " I will delay no longer. How does time 
go? I declare it's four o'clock." He then thougbt 
again, "I'll get over my dinner, and then at once 
betake myself to my good Passionists." 


To the coffee-house then he went, and, as it was 
some way off, it is not wonderful that it was near six 
before he arrived at the Convent. It was a plain 
brick building; money had not been so abundant as 
to overflow upon the exterior, after the expense of 
the interior had been provided for. And it was in- 
complete ; a large church had been enclosed, but it 
was scarcely more than a shell, — altars indeed had 
been set up, but, for the rest, it had little more than 
good proportions, a broad sanctuary, a serviceable 
organ, and an effective choir. There was a range 
of buildings adjacent, capable of holding about 
half-a-dozen fathers ; but the size of the church re- 
quired a larger establishment. By this time, doubt- 
less, things are very different, but we are looking 
back at the first efforts of the English Congregation, 
when it had scarcely ceased to struggle for hfe, and 
when friends and members were but beginning to 
flow in. 

It was indeed but ten years, at that time, since 
the severest of modern rules had been introduced 
into England. Two centuries after the memorable 
era when St. Philip and St. Ignatius, making light 
of those bodily austerities of which they were per- 
sonally so great masters, preached mortification of 
will and reason as more necessary for a civilised age, 
— in the lukewarm and self-indulgent eighteenth cen- 
tury, Father Paul of the Cross was divinely moved to 
found a Congregation in some respects more ascetic 
than the primitive hermits and the orders of the 
middle age. It was not fast, or silence, or poverty 
which distinguished it, though here too it is not 


wanting in strictness ; but in the cell of its venerable 
Founder, on the Celian Hill, hangs an iron discipline 
or scourge, studded with nails, which is a memorial, 
not only of his own self-inflicted sufferings, but of those 
of his Italian family. Their object was as remark- 
able as their intensity ; penance, indeed, is in one 
respect the end of all self-chastisement, but in the 
instance of the Passionists the use of the scourge is 
specially directed to the benefit of their neighbour. 
They apply the pain to the benefit of the holy souls 
in purgatory, or they undergo it to rouse a careless 
audience. On their missions, when their words seem 
uttered in vain, they have been known suddenly to 
undo their habit, and to scourge themselves with sharp 
knives or razors, crying out to the horrified people, 
that they would not shew mercy to their flesh, till 
they whom they were addressing took pity on their 
own perishing souls. Nor was it to their own coun- 
trymen alone that this self-consuming charity ex- 
tended ; how it so happened does not appear ; per- 
haps a certain memento close to their house was the 
earthly cause ; but so it was, that for many years 
the heart of Father Paul was expanded towards a 
northern nation, with which, humanly speaking, he 
had nothing to do. Over against St. John and St. 
Paul, the home of the Passionists on the Celian, rises 
the old church and monastery of San Gregorio, the 
womb, as it may be called, of English Christianity. 
There had lived that great Pope, who is named our 
Apostle, who was afterwards called to the chair of 
St. Peter ; and thence went forth, in and after his 
pontificate, Augustine, Paulinus, Justus, and the other 


Saints by 'whom our barbarous ancestors were con- 
verted. Their names, which are now written up 
upon the pillars of the portico, would almost seem to 
have issued forth, and crossed over, and confronted the 
venerable Paul; for, strange to say, the thought of 
England came into his ordinary prayers ; and in his 
last years, after a vision during Mass, as if he had 
been Augustine or Mellitus, he talked of his " sons" 
in England. 

It was strange enough that even one Italian in the 
heart of Rome should at that time have ambitious 
thoughts of making novices or converts in this coun- 
try; but, after the venerable Founder's death, his 
special interest in our distant isle shewed itself in an- 
other of the same Religion. On the Apennines, near 
Viterbo, there dwelt a shepherd-boy in the first years 
of this century, whose mind had early been drawn 
heavenward ; and one day, as he prayed before an 
image of the Madonna, he felt a vivid intimation 
that he was destined to preach the Gospel under the 
northern sky. There appeared no means by which 
a Roman peasant should be turned into a missionary ; 
nor did the prospect open, when this youth found 
himself, first a lay brother, then a Father, in the Con- 
gregation of the Passion. Yet though no external 
means appeared, the inward impression did not fade ; 
on the contrary, it became more definite, and in 
process of time, instead of the dim north, England 
was engraven on his heart. And, strange to say, as 
years went on, without his seeking, for he was simply 
under obedience, our peasant found himself at length 
upon the very shore of the stormy northern sea, 


whence Caesar of old looked out for a new world to 
conquer ; yet that he should cross the strait was still 
as little likely as before. However, it was as likely as 
that he should ever have got so near it ; and he used 
to eye the restless, godless waves, and wonder with 
himself whether the day would ever come when he 
should be carried over them. And come it did, not 
however by any determination of his own, but by 
the same Providence which thirty years before had 
given him the anticipation of it. 

At the time of our narrative, Father Domenico 
de Matre Dei had become familiar with England; 
he had had many anxieties here, first from want of 
funds, tben still more from want of men. Year 
past after year, and, whether fear of the severity of 
the rule — though that was groundless, for it had 
been mitigated for England — or the claims of other 
religious bodies was the cause, his community did 
not increase, and he was tempted to despond. But 
every work has its season ; and now for some time 
past that difficulty had been gradually lessening ; 
various zealous men, some of noble birth, others of 
extensive acquirements, had entered the Congrega- 
tion ; and our friend Willis, who at this time had 
received the priesthood, was not the last of these 
accessions, though domiciled at a distance from Lon- 
don. And now the reader knows much more about 
the Passionists than did Reding at the time that he 
made his way to their monastery. 

The church-door came first, and, as it was open, 
he entered it. It apparently was filling for service. 
When he got inside, the person who immediately 


preceded him dipped his finger into a vessel of water 
which stood at the entrance, and offered it to Charles. 
Charles, ignorant what it meant, and awkward from 
his consciousness of it, did nothing but slink aside, 
and look for some place of refuge ; but the whole 
space was open, and there seemed no corner to re- 
treat into. Every one, however, seemed about his 
own business ; no one minded him, and so far he felt 
at his ease. He stood near the door, and began to 
look about him. A profusion of candles were light- 
ing at the High Altar, which stood in the centre of 
a semicircular apse. There were side-altars — per- 
haps half-a-dozen ; most of them without lights, but, 
even here, solitary worshippers might be seen. Over 
one was a large old Crucifix with a lamp, and 
this had a succession of visitors. They came each 
for five minutes, saying some prayers which were 
attached in a glazed frame to the rail, and passed 
away. At another, which was in a chapel at the 
further end of one of the aisles, six long candles were 
burning, and over it was an image. On looking at- 
tentively, Charles made out at last that it was an 
image of Our Lady, and the Child held out a rosary. 
Here a congregation had already assembled, or rather 
was in the middle of some service, to him unknown. 
It was rapid, alternate, and monotonous ; and, as it 
seemed, interminable. Reding turned his eyes else- 
where. They fell first on one, then on another con- 
fessional, round each of which was a little crowd, 
kneeling, waiting every one his own turn for present- 
ing himself for the sacrament — the men at the one, 
the women at the other. At the lower end of the 


church were about three ranges of movable benches 
with backs and kneelers ; the rest of the large space 
was open, and filled with chairs. The growing ob- 
ject of attention at present was the High Altar ; and 
each person, as he entered, took a chair, and kneeling 
down behind it, began his prayers. At length the 
church got very full ; rich and poor were mixed to- 
gether — artisans, well-drest youths, Irish labourers, 
mothers with two or three children — the only divi- 
sion being that of men from women. A set of boys 
and children, mixed with some old crones, had got 
possession of the altar-rail, and were hugging it with 
restless motions, as if in expectation. 

Had Reding continued standing, no one would 
have noticed him ; but he saw the time was come for 
him to kneel, and accordingly he moved into a cor- 
ner-seat on the bench nearest him. He had hardly 
done so, when a procession with lights passed from 
the sacristy to the altar ; something went on which he 
did not understand, and then suddenly began what, 
by the Miserere and Ora pro nobis, he perceived to be 
a litany ; a hymn followed. Reding thought he never 
had been present at worship before, so absorbed was 
the attention, so intense was the devotion of the con- 
gregation. What particularly struck him was, that 
whereas in the Church of England the clergyman or 
the organ was every thing and the people nothing, 
except so far as the clerk is their representative, here 
it was just reversed. The priest hardly spoke, or at 
least audibly ; but the whole congregation was as 
though one vast instrument or Panharmonicon, mov- 
ing all together, and, what was most remarkable, as 


if self-moved. They did not seem to require any 
one to prompt or direct them, though in the Litany 
the choir took the alternate parts. The words were 
Latin, but every one seemed to understand them 
thoroughly, and to be offering up his prayers to the 
Blessed Trinity, and the Incarnate Saviour, and the 
great Mother of God, and the glorified Saints, with 
hearts full in proportion to the energy of the sounds 
they uttered. There was a little boy near him, and 
a poor woman, singing at the pitch of their voices. 
There was no mistaking it ; Reding said to himself, 
" This is a popular religion." He looked around at 
the building ; it was, as we have said, very plain, and 
bore the marks of being unfinished ; but the Living 
Temple which was manifested in it needed not curi- 
ous carving or rich marble to complete it, " for the 
glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb was the 
light thereof." " How wonderful," said Charles to 
himself, " that people call this worship formal and 
external ; it seems to possess all classes, young and 
old, polished and vulgar, men and women indiscri- 
minately; it is the working of one Spirit in all, 
making many one." 

While he was thus thinking, a change came over 
the worship. A priest, or at least an assistant, had 
mounted for a moment above the altar, and removed 
a chalice or vessel which stood there ; he could not. 
see distinctly. A cloud of incense rose on high ; 
the people suddenly all bowed low ; what could 
it mean? the truth flashed on him, fearfully yet 
sweetly ; it was the Blessed Sacrament — it was the 
Lord Incarnate, who was on the altar, who had come 


to visit and to bless His people. It was that Great 
Presence, which makes a Catholic Church different 
from every other place in the world ; which makes it, 
as no other place can be, holy. The Breviary offices 
were by this time not unknown to Reding ; and as he 
threw himself on the pavement, in sudden self-abase- 
ment and joy, some words of those great Antiphons 
came into his mouth, from which Willis had formerly 
quoted : " Adonai, et Dux domus Israel, qui Moysi 
in rubo apparuisti ; Emmanuel, Exspectatio Gen- 
tium et Salvator earum, veni ad salvandum nos, Do- 
mine Deus noster." 

The function did not last very long after this ; 
Reding, on looking up, found the congregation rapidly 
diminishing, and the lights in course of extinction. 
He saw he must be quick in his motions. He made 
his way to a lay brother, who was waiting till the 
doors could be closed, and begged to be conducted 
to the Superior. The lay brother feared he might 
be busy at that moment, but conducted him through 
the sacristy to a small neat room, where, being left 
to himself, he had time to collect his thoughts. At 
length the Superior appeared ; he was a man past 
the middle age, and had a grave yet familiar manner. 
Charles's feelings were indescribable, but all plea- 
surable. His heart beat not with fear or anxiety, 
but from the thrill of delight with which he reahsed 
that he was beneath the shadow of a Catholic com- 
munity, and face to face with one of its priests. His 
trouble went in a moment, and he could have laughed 
for joy. He could hardly keep his countenance, and 
almost feared to be taken for a fool. He presented 


the card of his railroad companion. The good Father 
smiled when he saw the name, nor did the few words 
which were written in pencil on the card diminish 
his satisfaction. Charles and he soon came to an 
understanding ; he found himself already known in 
the community hy means of Willis ; and it was ar- 
ranged that he should take up his lodging with his 
new friends forthwith, and remain there as long as 
it suited him. He was to prepare for confession at 
once ; and it was hoped that on the following Sunday 
he might be received into Catholic communion. Af- 
ter that, he was, at a convenient interval, to present 
himself to the Bishop, from whom he would seek the 
sacrament of confirmation. Not much time was 
necessary for removing his luggage from his lodg- 
ings ; and in the course of an hour from the time 
of his interview with Father Superior, he was sitting 
by himself, with pen and paper and his books, and 
with a cheerful fire, in a small cell of his new home. 


A very few words will conduct us to the end of 
our history. It was Sunday morning about seven 
o'clock, and Charles had been admitted into the 
communion of the Catholic Church about an hour 
since. He was still kneeling in the church of the 
Passionists before the Tabernacle, in the possession 
of a deep peace and serenity of mind, which he had 


not thought possible on earth. It was more like the 
stillness which almost sensibly affects the ears, when 
a bell which had long been tolling stops, or when a 
vessel, after much tossing at sea, finds itself in har- 
bour. It was such as to throw him back in memory 
on his earliest years, as if he were really beginning 
life again. But there was more than the happiness 
of childhood in his heart ; he seemed to feel a rock 
under his feet ; it was the soliditas Cathedrae Petri. 
He went on kneeling, as if he were already in hea- 
ven, with the throne of God before him, and Angels 
around ; and as if to move were to lose his privilege. 
At length he felt a light hand on his shoulder, 
and a voice said, " Reding, I am going ; let me just 
say farewell to you before I go." He looked round ; 
it was Willis, or rather Father Aloysius, in his dark 
Passionist habit, with the white heart sewed in at 
his left breast. Willis carried him from the church 
into the sacristy. " What a joy, Reding !" he said, 
when the door closed upon them ; " what a day of 
joy ! St. Edward's day, a doubly blessed day hence- 
forth. My Superior let me be present ; but now I 
must go. You did not see me, but I was present 
through the whole." " Oh," said Charles, " what 
shall Isay? — the Face of God! As I knelt, I 
seemed to wish to say this, and this only, with the 
Patriarch, ' Now let me die, since I have seen Thy 
Face.' " " You, dear Reding," said Father Aloysius, 
" have keen fresh feelings ; mine are blunted by fa- 
miliaiity." " No, Willis," he made answer, " you have 
taken the better part betimes, while I have loitered. 
Too late have I known Thee, Thou ancient Truth ; 
c c 


too late have I found Thee, first and only Fair !" 
" All is well, except as sin makes it ill," said Father 
Aloysius ; "if you have to lament loss of time before 
conversion, I have to lament it after. If you speak 
of delay, must not I of rashness ? A good God over- 
rules all things. But I must away. Do you recol- 
lect my last words when we parted in Devonshire ? 
I have thought of them often since ; they were too 
true then. I said, ' Our ways divide.' They are 
different still, yet they are the same. Whether we 
shall meet again here below, who knows ? but there 
will be a meeting ere long before the Throne of God, 
and under the shadow of His Blessed Mother and all 
Saints. ' Deus manifeste veniet, Deus noster, et non 
silebit.'" Reding took Father Aloysius's hand, and 
kissed it ; as he sank on his knees, the young priest 
made the sign of blessing over him. Then he va- 
nished through the door of the sacristy ; and the 
new convert sought his temporary cell, so happy in 
the Present, that he had no thoughts either for the 
Past or the Future. 


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